Le Français Oui, But Why?
After the conference on bilingualism in 2011, “My Culture Your Culture” on multilingualism in 2013, the Cultural Center of the Lycée Français de New York continues to explore the intricacies of bilingual brains with a conference dedicated to the French language and French-speaking cultures on Saturday, April 16, 2016, from 9:30am to 4pm.
Watch the video of the panel “Does the French language make us think of the world differently?”:
When parents decide that their children should learn the French language, adding bilingualism to their skills, they not only select a language but also a culture. A language is more than words; it is also a way of thinking about and seeing the world. French, the language of Descartes and the philosophers of the Enlightenment, is also the common language of some 57 Francophone countries around the world. It carries certain values, and possibly suggests a different approach to the world. In an increasingly English-speaking world, French, the language of culture par excellence, is still favored by many French-speaking artists and writers.
Watch the video of the panel “Why create in French?”:
On Saturday, April 16, 2016, writers, activists, educators and intellectuals, including Rokhaya Diallo, Adam Gopnik, and Patrick Weil, will seek to answer the question: Le Français Oui, But Why?
This conference is free and open to all those interested in the French language, French-speaking cultures, bilingualism, culture and identity. The roundtables will be held in French and in English and earphones will be provided for translation.
Location & Date
The event takes place on Saturday, April 16, 2016, from 10am to 4pm at the Lycée Français de New York
505 East 75th street
New York, NY10021
9:30am - 10:00am: Coffee and viennoiseries offered by the Moulin à Café
10am - 12pm First Panel: Does the French language make us think of the world differently?
French, the language of Descartes and the Philosophers of the Enlightenment is also the common language of Francophone countries. It carries certain values, and possibly suggests a different approach to the world. Can we identify those values? How are they expressed today? Are they still up to date?
Moderated by Pascale Richard, Director of Cultural Events at the Lycée Français de New York. Pascale Richard joined the LFNY team as director of the Lycée Français de New York’s Cultural Center in 2011. She aims to bring to the LFNY the best of French and American culture through conferences, concerts, films and various events. In the fall of 2012, she launched the school’s Artist-in-Residence program. Ms. Richard was previously Vice President of External Affairs at the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF). Her background is in journalism and writing with a focus on lifestyle and fashion. She is a graduate of Sciences po and holds a master’s in journalism from New York University.
Welcome note by Mr. Sean Lynch, Head of School Lycée Français de New York
Introduction by Bénédicte de Montlaur, Cultural Counselor at the French Embassy in the United States. Prior to that, Mrs. de Montlaur was the Deputy Director for North Africa at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Paris. Mrs de Montlaur spent three years in the French embassy in Syria before joining the French team of negotiators at the United Nations Security Council in New York. She graduated from the École Normale Supérieure and the Institut d’Études Politiques in Paris, and received a master’s degree in sociology from the Sorbonne.
Introduction by Paul Robert Tiendrebeogo, Permanent Observer of La Francophonie. Prior to that, Mr. Tiendrebeogo was the Permanent Representative of Burkina Faso in Vienna, Austria, accredited also to Croatia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Slovenia. From 2008 to 2011, he served as the Deputy Permanent Representative of Burkina Faso to the United Nations in New York City. Between 2007 and 2008, he was Ambassador and Diplomatic Adviser to the President of Burkina Faso in Ouagadougou.
Eileen M. Angelini, recipient of a 2010-2011 Canada-U.S. Fulbright award as a Fulbright Visiting Research Chair in Globalization and Cultural Studies at McMaster University (Hamilton, ON) and named Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques in August 2011 and to the Fulbright Specialist Roster in 2013, received her B.A. in French from Middlebury College (Middlebury, VT) and her M.A. and Ph.D. in French Studies from Brown University (Providence, RI). She is Professor of French at Canisius College (Buffalo, NY) and served as Chair of the Department of Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures from 2006-2009. During the 2006-2007 academic year, her first year at Canisius College, she established the College’s Nu Chi chapter of Pi Delta Phi, the National French Honor Society.
Rokhaya Diallo is a French journalist, writer, award-winning filmmaker and activist, for racial, gender and religious equality. She has produced and/or directed documentaries, TV and radio programs. She published : “Racism: a guide”, “France Belongs to Us”, “France: One and Multicultural” and “How to talk to kids about racism”. She recently published a graphic novel Pari(s) d’Amie. She was born from Senegalese and Gambian parents who moved to France in 1989.
Adam Gopnik is a Canadian-American writer, essayist and commentator. He is best known as a staff writer for The New Yorker - to which he has contributed non-fiction, fiction, memoir and criticism since 1986 - and as the author of the essay collection Paris to the Moon, an account of five years spent in the French capital.
Bénédicte de Montlaur, Cultural Counselor at the French Embassy in the United States. Prior to that, Mrs. de Montlaur was the Deputy Director for North Africa at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Paris. Mrs de Montlaur spent three years in the French embassy in Syria before joining the French team of negotiators at the United Nations Security Council in New York. She graduated from the École Normale Supérieure and the Institut d’Études Politiques in Paris, and received a master’s degree in sociology from the Sorbonne.
Patrick Weil is a French historian and political scientist. He is a Visiting Professor of Law and Oscar M. Ruebhausen Distinguished Senior Fellow at Yale Law School, and a senior research fellow at the French National Research Center in the University of Paris1, Pantheon-Sorbonne. He also holds an appointment as Professor at the Paris School of Economics.
12pm - 1:30pm: sandwiches and beverages served
1:30pm - 3pm Second Panel: Why create in French?
In an increasingly English-speaking world, French, the language of culture par excellence, is still favored by many French-speaking artists and writers.
Moderated by Isabelle Milkoff, Head of Literature and Philosophy Department, French literature teacher at the Lycée Français de New York. Isabelle Milkoff-Radigan holds an agrégation and a Ph.D in French Literature. She has taught both in Paris and nearby cities, at the junior high school, high school and university levels. Besides French, she enjoys teaching theater. At the Parisian lycée where Ms. Milkoff-Radigan had previously been a teacher for twelve years, she created and taught theater workshops. She also directed workshops for the Académie de Paris teacher’s training program on theater and the contemporary French novel. Reader, writer, director & contemporary art and theater enthusiast, Ms. Milkoff-Radigan likes her classes to be open to the world and enriched by an active engagement in literature. In September 2010, she joined the Lycée Français de New York as the head of the French and Philosophy Department.
Alain Borer is a poet, art critic and writer, playwright, and a world-renowned specialist of Arthur Rimbaud. His last essay, De quel amour blessée. Réflexions sur la langue française (Gallimard, 2014), was written in defense of the french language.
Lili Chopra has been the artistic director of FIAF since 2006. She is the founder and curator of Crossing the Line, FIAF’s trans-disciplinary fall festival. She has extensive experience in programming, producing and marketing international events and performance works in both France and New York. In addition to working with various festivals and independent artists as an administrator and producer, she spent four years at New York Live Arts working closely with David White as Associate Producer and as Curator of its gallery. She received her Master’s in Theater and Performing Arts History at Paris X University and her M.A. in Arts Administration at Columbia University.
Catherine Cusset was born in Paris in 1963. She studied at the École Normale Supérieure and is agrégée in Modern literature. She taught during twelve years at Yale. She wrote ten novels published by Gallimard between 1990 and 2013, including En toute innocence, Le problème avec Jane (Grand prix littéraire des lectrices d’Elle 2000), and Un brillant avenir (Prix Goncourt des Lycéens 2008). Her works have been translated in fifteen different languages. She has been living for twenty years in New York.
Florent Masse is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of French and Italian at Princeton and the Director of L’Avant-Scène, the French Theater Workshop. He is the Artistic Director of Seuls en Scène, Princeton French Theater Festival that he has curated annually since its creation in 2012. He has directed about forty full-length productions of popular and celebrated plays in the French theatrical canon, including Le Tartuffe (2005 & 2010), Dom Juan (2008), L’École des femmes (2012), Les femmes savantes (2012) and Le Cid (2013). He has brought to Princeton a list of prominent French theater artists to perform or direct master classes such as Guillaume Gallienne and Pierre Niney.
Jean-Benoit Nadeau writes for Le Devoir, he is a reporter for L’actualité and columnist in Avenues. He is the author of The Story of French, The Story of Spanish and Sixty Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong. This spring, he will publish The Bonjour Effect, the Secret Codes of French Conversation Revealed (St. Martin’s Press).
French-Speaking Cultures Fair
The first French-Speaking Cultures Fair in New York will take place in the cafeteria of the Lycée. Don’t miss the opportunity to meet and get information from our exhibitors who are all participating to spread the French language and defend French-speaking cultures. The French-speaking cultures Fair will take place from 9:30am to 4pm with no interruption. It is free and open to all. If you come with family, your children can attend workshops in French organized by Kiddy French Wink and DifFRactions. Sign up for the children’s workshops.
If you want to keep a souvenir of the day, come to our photo booth and give us your answer to the question ” le français oui, but why?”. The photos and messages will be shared on our social media.
After the roundtables, book signings will be organized at the Albertine booth in the cafeteria:
- From 12pm to 12:30pm: Rokhaya Diallo and Patrick Weil
- From 3pm to 3:30pm: Alain Borer, Catherine Cusset and Jean-Benoît Nadeau