Photo of Scott Carpenter

Scott Carpenter

Professor of French, French and Francophone

Education & Professional History

University of Minnesota, BA; University of Wisconsin (Madison), PhD

Scott Carpenter (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, Madison) teaches courses on nineteenth- and twentieth-century literature, the aesthetics of falseness, literary theory. He has published extensively (sometimes with students) on such authors as Charles Baudelaire, George Sand, Honoré de Balzac, and Prosper Mérimée. In addition to Acts of Fiction (1996, on political representations in nineteenth-century literature) and Reading Lessons (2000, an introduction to literary theory), he has co-edited an intermediate French reader (Vagabondages littéraires). Another book focuses on literary and cultural mystifications: Aesthetics of Fraudulence in Nineteenth-Century France: Frauds, Hoaxes and Counterfeits (2009).  In 2019 he published the coauthored volume, Integrating Worlds: How Off-Campus Study Can Transform Undergraduate Education (Stylus Publishing, 2019).

Scott also teaches in the creative writing minor. In addition to many short stories in a variety of journals, he has published three books in fiction and memoir: This Jealous Earth: Stories, MG Press (2013); Theory of Remainders: A Novel, Winter Goose Publishing (2013); French Like Moi: A Midwesterner in Paris (July, 2020). His awards include the Mark Twain House Royal Nonesuch Prize, the Solas House Gold Award, the Next Generation Book Award, Midwest Independent Bookstore Bestseller, Kirkus Reviews “Best Books of 2013”. He was also a finalist for the 2021 Forward Indies Book Award.


At Carleton since 1990.

Highlights & Recent Activity


  • French Like Moi: A Midwesterner in Paris (2020)
  • Theory of Remainders (novel) (2013).
  • This Jealous Earth: Stories, MG Press (2013)


  • With H. Kaufman, M. Torp: Integrating Worlds: How Off-Campus Study Can Transform Undergraduate Education. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, 2019
  • The Aesthetics of Fraudulence in Nineteenth-century France: Frauds, Hoaxes, and Counterfeits.  Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate Publications, 2009.
  • Reading Lessons: An Introduction to Theory.  Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2000.
  • Acts of Fiction: Resistance and Resolution from Sade to Baudelaire.  University Park: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1996.
  • Vagabondages littéraires (co-editor with the members of the French Section at Carleton) New York: McGraw-Hill, 1996.

Current Courses

  • Winter 2023
    CCST 270: Creative Travel Writing Workshop
  • Spring 2023
    CCST 270: Creative Travel Writing Workshop
    FREN 340: Arts of Brevity: Short Fiction
    FREN 341: Madame Bovary and Her Avatars
  • Spring 2024
    FREN 208: Paris Program: Contemporary France: Cultures, Politics, Society
    FREN 254: Paris Program: French Art in Context
    FREN 255: Paris Program: Islam in France: Historical Approaches and Current Debates
    FREN 259: Paris Program: Hybrid Paris
    FREN 359: Paris Program: Hybrid Paris