French Language and Literature
The French program emphasizes a critical understanding of the French-speaking world by focusing on language skills, analytical tools, and the study of a variety of kinds of cultural expressions. These studies are one effective way of gaining a deeper understanding of the world, which is an important element of a liberal arts education. The department offers courses in French literature and culture and the literatures and cultures of Francophone Africa, Canada, Asia, and the Antilles. Students of French may study abroad in Strasbourg and Clermont-Ferrand in France and in Dakar, Sénégal.
Coursework and off-campus experiences are complemented by on-campus opportunities that maintain and improve a student’s language skills and expand students' understanding of the Francophone world. Viewing French language films, reading French publications, conversing with classmates and native speakers at the French table, and attending area cultural events are among the opportunities offered.
Faculty members meet students inside and outside the classroom, participate in campus activities, and counsel students regarding graduate and professional career choices in music, high school and college teaching, science, publishing, government, international trade, international banking, non-governmental organizations, and other fields. French majors and minors at Kalamazoo College have a high rate of acceptance when applying for French government teaching assistantships for teaching English in France after graduation.