Introduction to the Department

The Department of French and Francophone Studies at Carleton represents a vibrant collection of faculty and students who share a passion for things francophone, from Paris to Timbuktu, from Renaissance literature to contemporary French slam. The department offers a varied curriculum that is designed for both majors and non-majors, extensive extracurricular opportunities on campus, and two academic programs abroad: an annual program in Paris and Morocco and an occasional program in Senegal, West Africa.

French is the language not only of France, but also of Switzerland, Belgium, Canada, Haiti, French Guyana, no fewer than twenty-three African countries, and many islands in the South Pacific and the Indian Ocean. It continues to be one of the most frequently studied second languages in the world. It can be beneficial for students who plan to enter professions in international affairs, international development, law, journalism, science, social services, education, medicine, business, and politics. French is also the language of a rich literary, philosophical, and cultural heritage.

Language Study in the Time of Covid

Lots of students are asking what language study looks like these days at Carleton. The good news is that they’re actually pretty great! While we’d all love to be studying in the same classroom, the fact is that virtual tools also create opportunities for high-powered learning.

Don’t worry that you’ll be stuck teaching yourself French or Spanish or Chinese with nothing but online recordings and multiple-choice exercises. We’re very used to harnessing technology to enhance language acquisition, and now, using Zoom we’re able to create exciting learning spaces and even a sense of community. Every class is done in real time, and thanks to breakout rooms (sometimes with the prof, sometimes with TAs), you’ll get lots of small-group practice. You’ll learn language and culture this term, and you’ll be perfectly prepared to step into the next level during Winter term. Moreover, you’ll be on pace to do your dream study-abroad program in the next year or two—whether it be in Paris, Madrid, Tokyo, Senegal, or somewhere else!

Statement of Support, June 2020

The Department of French and Francophone Studies supports people of color, especially the Black community, who are mourning their communities devastated by the pandemic and by police brutality. Our department commits to continuing its educational mission on topics of race and violence within academia, but also to helping its students fight the systemic racism that terrorizes people of color in the United States and beyond. 
Facebook will not be enough. 
We are here for you and want to encourage you to contact us.

See the following resources for information on donations and activism: