Anne François, PhD

Dr. Anne Francois, PhD
Professor of French and Francophone Studies
Office: McInnis 212
Phone: 610-225-5544
Read Dr. Francois' CV


Ph.D. Department of French, New York University
M.A. Department of French, New York University
B.A. Department of French, New York University


I have been teaching in the Language & Cultural Studies Department since 2000. Before coming here, I taught at New York University in New York and in Paris. I also taught at Grace Church School in New York for children in 1st and 2nd grade as well as at Smith College in Northampton as a Mendenhall Fellow.

Education has always been an integral part of my life. Growing up in Haiti, my mother was a school teacher. My love of literature and culture started ever since I was very young and I was fortunate to be born in a family who loves books. In the small town of my Haitian childhood, my parents were among the few people who had a good size library. I was fascinated by books and the stories in them. Through the stories I read, I travelled to exotic places and learned about new cultures. By the time I was thirteen, I had read some of the great canonic French authors of various centuries including Balzac, Voltaire and Stendhal. With my passion and love for learning there was no doubt that I would be in a career that involves reading. For me, education is freedom. I believe that education gives us access to knowledge and that knowledge in turn allows us to better understand and appreciate our global and challenging world.

As a professional, I believe I have a responsibility to give back to my community and to take my teaching outside of the classroom. To that end, I have worked with the local community and international community through various activities. I served as a board member to Art Well, a non-profit organization that works with inner city schools in Philadelphia to provide children with arts projects, for twelve years. I have also taken students abroad on mission trips. For instance, I travelled to Guatemala with a former student of mine to work an orphanage and in a women’s clinic. I also took a group of students to Haiti after the 2010 earthquake to do humanitarian work. These experiences help me to constantly grow as a professional. My belief is that I can learn from every encounter that I have with individuals from various walks of life. These community engagements have allowed me to do so.

I love the French language and I feel passionate about teaching it. I am constantly promoting the importance of the French language and Francophone cultures. I challenge students to understand the wide scope of French around the world. French is spoken in over 30 countries on the African continent and is one of the official languages of the United Nations. I help my students see French in a global context and how learning French can help them in their career whether in the health professions, teaching, business, law and international relations among others. I have taken my students to local French pastries, restaurants and museums to make their learning of language and culture interactive. It is always exciting for me to see how students use the target language in the real world and for them to understand that language and culture are applicable to our daily lives.

For the academic year 2009-2010, I was a Fulbright scholar and researcher in Burkina Faso (West Africa). The experience of teaching students with such an eagerness and thirst for knowledge in spite of the limited resources many of them had was one of the most rewarding academic experiences in my life. I was able to create bonds of friendship and nurturing with the community there. As a result of my experience and time spent there I continue to support some students by paying school fees for three girls in a village in Burkina Faso. I remain in close contact with many individuals there and I am working with some colleagues to see how we can better support a school there. This experience was incredibly enriching and rewarding for me.

I am now working in collaboration with Dr. Cécile Accilien from Columbus State University and writing an article on the absence of slave narratives in the former French colony of Saint Domingue, what we know in present day as Haiti. We just presented the first part of our research project at the 2015 College Language Association conference in Dallas, Texas. I am also passionate about my research. For me, teaching and research are interchangeable. My teaching informs my research and vice-versa. But the most rewarding aspect of teaching and research for me is to share my knowledge of French and Francophone literatures and cultures with my students. These exchanges open new ways of thinking and seeing the world from a Christian point of view.

One thing you may not know about me is that I love to play scrabble with friends and family members and do crosswords. I also love to travel and discover new cultures.

Courses Taught

Introductory French, Intermediate French, French Conversation and Composition, French Phonetics and Phonology, Survey of French Literature, Advanced French Grammar, French Culture and Civilization, Francophone Literature, Francophone Cultures through Text and Films (taught in English), English 225 (Post-colonial Women's novels, English Department), Introductory Spanish, INST150

Why I Teach at Eastern

I appreciate being an integral part of this teaching community where I feel at ease as a Christian intellectual and be able to articulate my faith without any shame or fear. I enjoy teaching here because Eastern offers me a lot of opportunities to grow as a scholar and teacher. I also enjoy learning from my students and colleagues. It is exciting and rewarding to teach in an environment where my faith and belief can continue to grow spiritually and intellectually.

Research Interests

French and Francophone Studies, Literary Criticism, Women's studies, Post-colonial theory and literature, Film Studies

Teaching Experience

  • Eastern University. Professor of French (2000-present)
  • Universite de Ouagadougou, School of Letters, Arts and Communications, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Fulbright Scholar and Researcher (2009-2010)
  • New York University. Graduate Teaching Assistant, French Department (1995-1999)
  • New York University in France. Graduate Teaching Assistant (Summer 1998, 1999)
  • Smith College. Lectured on Francophone Literatures and Cultures (Fall 1999, Spring 2000)
  • Grace Church School, New York City. French Teacher for Kindergarten, First and Second grade (Fall 1996)


  • Article on "Anthony Phelps" in the Dictionary of Caribbean and Afro-Latin Biography. New York, Oxford University Press. Forthcoming publication.
  • Dieu a-til une strategie? [Does God have a strategy?] Translation of Philippe Carey and Jean Francois Phelizon's theological essay. Wipf and Stock Publichers. Forthcoming publication.
  • "Islands without Borders: Teaching the Caribbean across Languages and Cultures" in Reimaging the Caribbean. Conversations among the Creole, English, French and Spanish Caribbean. Ed. Valerie Orlando, Sandra Messinger Cypess. Lexington Books, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. 2014.
  • "Simone Weil: Ambivalence in Search of God" in French Women Authors. The Significance of the Spiritual (1400-2000). Ed. Kelsey Haskett, Holly Faith Nelson. Delaware U.P. 2013.
  • Rewriting The Return to Africa: Voices of Francophone Caribbean Women Writers. Lexington Books, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. 2011.
  • "Reflections SCT 2006" for The Newsletter of the School of Criticism and Theory. Cornell University. Fall 2006.
  • "Haiti" in African Caribbeans: A Reference Guide, Chapter 8. Wesport: Connecticut: Greenwod Press. 2003
  • "Une histoire de danse et de pluie", Translation of Louis-Philippe Dalembert's short story Calabash (A Journal of Caribbean Arts and Letters). Vol. I, Fall 2000

Professional Presentations

  • "The absence of slave narratives in French. The case of Haiti (St-Domingue)". Expanding Frontiers, College Language Association Conference. Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, March 2015
  • "L'importance du vaudou dans l'identite culturelle haitienne." Pathways and Porticos. The Caribbean and The South as Catalyst in Languages and Literatures. College Language Association Conference. Tulane Universit, New Orleans, Louisiana, March 2014
  • "Negotiating race, cultures, and languages: The formation of Haitian-Cuban Cultural Identity." Congreso Internacional de Literatura. Catagena, Columbia, March 2014
  • "Toussaint Louverture: History, Myth, and Controversy." NYU Visiting Faculty Program. February 2014
  • "Migrant Identities: Exile and memory in the poetry of Marie Celie Agnant." Haiti in a Globalized Frame. International Conference. Winthrop King Institute for Contemporary French and Francophone Studies. Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics. Florida State University, Tallahasse, Florida, February 2013
  • "Teaching the Caribbean Across Cultures & Languages." Modern Language Association Convention. Boston, January 2013
  • "Proverbs, Memory and Cultural Survival in Simone Schwartz-Bart's Pluie et Vent sur Telumee Miracle." In the Spirit of Sankofa. Moving Forward, Looking Back in Languages and Literature. College Language Association Conference. Spelman College, Atlanta, Georgia, March 2012
  • “Emeline Michel: Transcultural Borders and the Problematic of Language.” Narrativity and Musicality: A Confluence of Language, Literature and Culture. College Language Association. University of South Carolina Upstate, April 2011
  • “Women in Politics.” Université de Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. February, 2010.
  • “The Problematic of identity” in the works of Maryse Condé, Simone Schwarz-Bart and Myriam Warner-Vieyra. ” Centre Culturel Américain, Ouagadoudou, Burkina Faso, November 2009.
  • “Les effets négatifs de la polygamie sur la santé de la femme” dans Juletane de Myriam Warner-Viera et Une si longue lettre de Mariama Bâ. Maison Francophone, University of Pennsylvania, November 2008.
  • “The Identity Quest in Maryse Condé’s Desirada.” Caribbean Association Studies. San Andres Island, Colombia, May 2008
  • “Ecrire et lire la femme antillaise dans la littérature féminine.” MMLA Convention. St-Louis, Missouri, October 2004
  • “A Daughter’s Search for Liberation in Maryse Condé’s Desirada.” Focalizing the body:
  • Contemporary Women’s Writing and Filmmaking in France. Institute of Romance Studies, University of London, October 2003.
  • “A Daughter’s Quest for Identity and Space in Maryse Condé’s Desirada.” The Humanities: Community, Identity, and the Quest for the Good Life, The Ohio State University, Columbus, November 2003
  • “La face cachée de l’immigration clandestine dans le film La Promesse des frères Dardenne.” CIEF (Conseil International d’Études Francophones). Université de Liège, Belgique, June 2003
  • “Staying on the Margins: Simone Weil on faith.” Women of Faith, Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia, July 2003
  • “The Rewriting of History in Simone Schwarz-Bart’s Ti Jean L’Horizon.” International 20th--21st Century French Studies Conference. University of Connecticut, Hartford, April 2002
  • “Africa, the absent Father: the problematic of identity in Maryse Condé’s Heremakhonon and The Last of the African Kings.” French Accents Conference, New York University, March 2001
  • “Résistance dans la littérature des Antilles (Martinique et Guadeloupe).” Department of French and Italian, University of Iowa, April 2000
  • “Understanding the Fragmentation and Reconstruction of the Self in Francophone Caribbean Literature.” Mendenhall Lecture, Smith College, April 2000
  • “Maryse Condé’s Work in a Cultural and Political Context.” Department of French, Smith College, Mars 1999
  • “L’impact de la langue créole dans la révolution haïtienne.” Department of French, Smith College, February 1999

Related Professional Activities

  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Kentucky, Ohio. June 11-18, 2014
  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Kentucky, Ohio. June 11-18, 2013.
  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Kentucky, Ohio. June 10-17, 2012.
  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Kentucky, Ohio. June 11-18, 2011.
  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Kentucky, Ohio. June 10-18, 2010.
  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Louisville Kentucky. June 4-12, 2009.
  • AP French Reader. College Board AP Reading Scoring AP French Essays. Louisville Kentucky. June 4-11, 2008.

Professional Affiliations

  • MLA (Modern Language Association)
  • CIEF (Conseil international des etudes francophones)
  • ACTFL (American Council of Teachers of Foreign Languages)
  • WIF (Women in French)
  • CAS (Caribbean Association Studies)
  • CLA (College Language Association)


French, Haitian Creole, Spanish

Back to Top