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French & Francophone Studies

Kohlberg Hall

Department Overview

In French and Francophone Studies, you will learn French and acquire global competence in the Francophone world. You are introduced to modern France and a variety of French-speaking countries such as Algeria, Belgium, Haiti, and Senegal. You can develop an in-depth critical and comparative understanding of  the textual, filmic, and cultural productions of each of these regions. Our courses also pay careful attention to the major historical, social, and political developments that have shaped France, and its former colonies, thus providing an opportunity to understand the forces underlying these various cultures, literatures, and films. You will also expand your knowledge of the diversity of French-speaking countries.  In our program, you can explore interests as diverse as critical theory, film studies, gender studies, postcolonial studies, or the Islamic world, and work directly with primary sources in their original language.

Studying French gives you access to an exciting and broad intellectual tradition, offers a unique perspective on vibrant cultures, and aims to build a cross-cultural understanding with the goal of educating global citizens better able to participate in an increasingly interconnected world. Over 200 million people speak French...why don't you?

Paris, France
Mausoleé de Sidi El Houari, Oran, Algérie
Stravinksky Fountain at the Pompidou Center, Paris, France
Paris, France
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Meet Our Students

Listen to students share their perspectives on studying French at Swarthmore.


French Language Tables

To help mitigate any risks linked to Covid and eating unmasked in close quarters, the French section has decided to hold its language tables TWICE a week (choose whatever fits your schedule the best) under the TROTTER TENT. 

Join the conversation at one or both of La table française and/or Le café français!  The French section will hold La table française in person during this semester on Thursdays from 12:35 pm to 1:30 pm and Le café français on Tuesdays from 4:00 pm to 4:30 pm.  Enjoy chatting in French with classmates, native speakers, and professors.  If you would like to join us, please come to the Trotter Tent.  Thanks, and hope to see you there!


French language table

Language Media Lab

The Language Media Lab provides resources to enhance the study of foreign language, literature, and culture at Swarthmore College. Students have access to audio/video materials required for foreign language classes. The lab's resources include 12 Macbook Pros, 8 iMacs, an extensive library of foreign films, video cameras, and audio recorders. The space is a unique, adaptable, multimedia-friendly place to study, practice and develop language skills. 

Learn More

Choose a Language Program