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Minor in French Studies

Your Ticket to the French-Speaking WorldThe study of world languages and literatures lies at the very center of the humanities. World language majors not only acquire skills in reading, writing and speaking many languages, but they also explore and develop an appreciation for the literature and broader cultures of lands and peoples around the globe. The French program offers students the opportunity to study the language and literature of the French-speaking world. Our alumni are working in multinational companies, global non-profit organizations, as well as universities and schools around the world.  

Minor in French degree requirements

Special Courses for Spring 2017

FREN 398. (Cross-listed with ENGL 387-02) Topics in Literature, Culture and Difference: Global Existentialist Literature - Hernandez-Laroche

We will explore the powerful appeal of existentialist literature and thought for authors (and filmmakers) of different traditions, nations, religious backgrounds and mother tongues. Existentialism offered writers and artists from around the globe a language to evoke the absurdity of injustice, of a prison-like existence and all while rebelling against the indifference of their time. The question of perception and of being perceived through the paralyzing gaze of society is central. Jean-Paul Sartre’s call for a literature of political and social engagement resonated throughout the world during his time and beyond. Texts will be in in English and translated from mostly French (some original texts and films will be studied in English translation from Spanish, Italian, Yiddish and Arabic). We will examine what it means to “translate” one’s marginal experience within a dominate culture, or as Ta-Nehisi Coates describes it, “being alive” in constantly “studying and observing” the world around us. One of the dominant themes is to examine the way in which languages open up the world in its magnificent complexity, diversity and beauty. Some examples of the writers studied—in their own voices: “The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion,” Albert Camus; “Sitting in that garden [in Paris, France], for the first time I was an alien, I was a sailor—landless and disconnected. And I was sorry that I have never felt this particular loneliness before—that I have never felt myself so far outside of someone else’s dream. Now I felt the deeper weight of my generational chains—my body confined, by history and policy, to certain zones. Some of us make it out. But the game is played with a loaded dice,” Ta-Nehisi Coates; “I met a lot of people in Europe. I even encountered myself,” James Baldwin. Course is cross-listed with French 398 (French students can research and write in French). Furthermore, there will be an optional Service-Learning component: GED tutoring of female or male inmates at the local detention center as part of the award-winning “Operation Educate” program. Finally, the class will be taught in an active-learning classroom for a more engaged exchange of ideas through collaborative, digital work. 

What French Studies Can Do for You

Languages, Literature, and Composition

World Language Programs
Dr. Celena Kusch

Department Chair
Dr. Araceli Hernandez-Laroche
Assistant Chair
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To schedule an appointment with tutors in Spanish, French or Chinese stop by HPAC 136 or call 864-503-5883.

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USC Upstate
Department of Languages, Literature & Composition
HPAC 222
800 University Way
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Phone: 864-503-5688
Fax: 864-503-5825
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