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French Language and Literature

Degree Options: Major, Minor
Locations: Lincoln Center, Rose Hill
Visit the French Department

A half-billion people will speak French by 2025. Be one of them.

Stock photo of Arc de Triomphe - LG

Maybe you love the sound of the language or the culture depicted in books and films. Or perhaps you want to live or travel in one of the 29 countries where French is an official language.

In the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, you will study French language, French and Francophone cultures, and literatures from medieval times through the present.

Majoring in French at Fordham goes well beyond the classroom! You will find many opportunities to immerse yourself in French and various Francophone cultures both abroad and right here in New York City. Take advantage of a strong Francophone presence, from “Little France” in Brooklyn to the growing West African and Haitian communities in the Bronx, Harlem and Queens. Choose from a wide range of study abroad programs and spend a summer, semester, or year studying in a Francophone country.

We draw on a long Jesuit tradition of scholarship on and respect for the world's diverse languages and cultures—and virtually all of them are in New York City.

You will learn more than French language and literature here. You will also study philosophy, theology, economics, mathematics, ethics, science, and the performing arts through Fordham’s common core curriculum, the centerpiece of our liberal arts education.

We want you to excel in your field—and as a human being.

Program Highlights

As a French Language and Literature major, you will take a total of 10 courses.

All courses are taught in French, and you will be required to speak in French in class discussions and oral presentations.

We have two Language Learning Centers for solo studying or collaboration with classmates:

  • Language Learning Center at Rose Hill: a state-of-the-art, multi-use, interactive digital language laboratory with 54 self-contained computer stations equipped with the most up-to-date audio, recording, and film viewing technology.
  • Olga M. Ficarra/Francis J. Morison Language Laboratory at Lincoln Center: a multi-use, interactive, computer-based facility with 25 student work stations equipped with CD, audio, video, and DVD capabilities.

Study Abroad

We highly encourage you to spend a summer, semester, or year studying in a Francophone country.

Explore Paris’s art, literature and culture—and receive credits toward your French degree—in the summer study class “The Flâneur in Paris,” taught by Prof. Andrew H. Clark.

Find many other ways to immerse yourself in Francophone language and culture through Fordham’s International and Study Abroad Program. Choose from a wide range of courses taught in French.

Student Clubs

  • La Société Francaise (Lincoln Center) exposes you to the French and Francophone cultures of New York City through programs and activities.
  • Le Cercle Français (Rose Hill) encourages you to speak French and socialize with your fellow Francophiles through food, movies, current events, and celebrations.

Honor Society

Pi Delta Phi, the national honor society for outstanding undergraduate and graduate scholarship in French language and literature, has an active chapter at Rose Hill.

Sample Courses

Writing and Rewriting Seduction
Writers & Lawbreakers
French autobiography
French Films d'Auteur
Medieval Literature
French Theater & Performance
Early Authors, Modern Theory
Francophone Voices from North Africa
French Visual Culture

Life After Fordham

With advanced proficiency in speaking and writing French as well as an extensive cultural preparation, you will be prepared to earn advanced degrees and pursue a wide range of career opportunities. Wherever French is spoken or needed -- in Europe, in Africa or in North America -- there may be a role for you.

Our graduates have earned advanced degrees in :

  • French and Francophone Studies
  • Comparative Literature
  • International Affairs

They have attended professional schools in:

  • Law
  • Journalism 
  • Social Work
  • Education

They work in as many fields as French turns out to be an asset, including:

  • Finance
  • Publishing
  • Nonprofit

Our career services tap Fordham’s ties with more than 2,600 companies. We offer:

  • Post-graduation career search
  • Resume development, Interviewing practice
  • Networking skill development
  • Hands-on case-study sessions with industry executives
  • Field-specific advising/coaching

You also get access to our powerful (and Fordham-loyal) network of alumni, who want to see you succeed as they have.

French Language and Literature Degree