The program in French and Francophone Studies at Lawrence prepares you to read, speak, write, analyze and explore the history, 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.

You will reach competence in use and knowledge of the language, as well as develop the ability to engage critically with important intellectual ideas from the French-speaking world as they have evolved across time and space.

  • Developing the capacity to express reasonably complicated thought both orally and in writing of another language
  • Exploring global perspectives through literature, theater, film, news broadcasts and many more mediums
  • Taking a historical approach to the study of the literature and culture of the French-speaking world
  • Study abroad opportunities
  • Celebrating traditions, cultures and languages that differ from your own
  • Anthropology
  • Art History
  • Biochemistry
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Economics
  • English
  • Environmental studies
  • Music performance
  • Music education
  • Studio art


Life After Lawrence

Lawrentians enjoy careers in...

Education, medicine, law, business, library science, fashion, photography, social work, marketing, global development, finance, diplomacy and public affairs

Recent employers include...

Brooklyn Public Library,  Brown University, French Cultural Embassy, The John Marshall Foundation, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, Tiffany & Co., U.S. Army, U.S. Embassy

Lawrentians can earn advanced degrees in...

Education, Journalism, Marketing, Law, Business, Art and graphic design, Ambassador

At places like...

University of Denver, George Washington University, Johns Hopkins University, Marquette University, University of Michigan, New York University, Stanford University, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Learn (and eat) en français

The French and Francophone Studies program provides an immersive experience, where only French is used in the classroom. Join with your on-campus French-speaking community at French Tables twice weekly, where you, your classmates, and professors share a meal and further practice and explore the language.

Go beyond language to culture

Learning about cultural differences is important in the French and Francophone Studies department. Democracy may look like démocratie, but start talking about the Muslim headscarf or Charlie Hebdo and you will hear some new arguments about rights and privileges; listen to the conversations about women’s roles in Senegalese society and you will understand a lot more about international feminism.

Reach beyond campus.

Our programs for French study abroad represent a variety of cultures (two in France, one in Senegal, and one in Québec). Consistent with our emphasis on language and culture immersion, all students stay with families in their host country.

10-week immersion in French and Wolof

Take 10 weeks of language courses in French and Wolof at the Baobab Center in Dakar. The term is a multi-faceted experience combining lectures on West African literature, history, art, religion, and contemporary culture along with basic Wolof lessons, music lessons (on traditional Senegalese instruments), dance lessons, and travel throughout the country.

Components of the Major

  • Complete 10 French courses beyond Intermediate French III.
  • Attend at least one Bjorklunden French language immersion weekend junior or senior year, where you will be able to demonstrate your proficiency in a free and unstructured environment
  • Attend at least six meetings of the French Table, where you will be the discussion leader at one
  • Assemble a portfolio of your work in French that records your progress with linguistic proficiency, literary and cultural mastery, and sophistication of ideas.

Course descriptions and more courses

The Chandler Senior Experience

French and Francophone studies requires a Senior Experience that consists of a one-term senior seminar (winter) in which possible research topics are defined and outlined, culminating in a written thesis and an oral, in-class presentation of the student's work. Other types of research projects and interdisciplinary capstones in French may meet the requirement; the possibility of an alternative project must be discussed with the department chair and the student's advisor.

Recent Senior Experiences include:


Une Exploration du rap et du hip-hop dans la culture française [An Exploration of Rap and Hip-hop in French Culture]

La surprise délicieuse des baisers volés: L’Egalité et l’individu dans les réponses féministes à l’affaire DSK [The Delicious Surprise of Stolen Kisses: Equality and the Individual in Feminist Responses to the Strauss-Kahn Affair]

Proust le poète neurologue: La Science et l’esthétisme dans A la recherche du temps perdu [Proust the Neurological Poet : Science and Estheticism in In Search of Lost Time]

L’Argot à la Téci : L’Identité double dans les banlieues [Slang in the Projects : Double Identity in the Suburbs]