The program in French and Francophone Studies at Lawrence is grounded in an historical approach to the study of the literature and culture of the French-speaking world, both the classical literature of France and the Francophone literature from Canada and the French-speaking nations of north and west Africa. French language instruction has as its goal the development of a student's capacity to read, write, and speak the language.
Goals of the beginning and intermediate sequences in French include the following:
- Comprehension of both the oral and written language beyond an elementary level
- Development of the capacity to express reasonably complicated thought both orally and in writing
- An introduction to French and Francophone literatures and cultures
At the advanced level, the student is expected to reach competence in use and knowledge of the French language and to become conversant with French and francophone literatures and cultures. Students will not only familiarize themselves but also engage critically with important intellectual ideas from the French-speaking world as they have evolved across time and space.
From the beginning, French is used extensively, if not totally, in the classroom. Except where specified, all class discussion, essays and examinations are conducted in French.