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Modern Languages and Literatures

Fall 2020 French Events

Posted in: French


We have a full slate of activities planned for the Fall 2020 semester. This is the beginning of a work in progress, so please check back often and follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@msufrench) for up-to-date announcements and activity add-ons!

We’re taking advantage of the good weather for socially distanced outside events while we can, in addition to online activities for conversation, grammar review, and streaming film parties.

Free French tutoring and conversation

Drop-in Zoom hours: Tuesdays and Thursdays (starting Sept. 3) from 12-4 with Gerry Plinio (you may have to wait to be admitted). Please contact Mlle Plinio ( for conversation groups at other times.

Drop-in Conversation hour, Wednesdays (except for Nov. 25) from 2-3. Stay tuned for scavenger hunts, Halloween, and more!

Free Events

Pique-nique dans le parc

Monday, Aug. 31 from 2-3 (Student Center quad, weather permitting)

Bring your own snack or choose from among our pre-packaged French treats. Practice your French while social distancing on the Student Center quad!

RSVP here:

Tombola géante! 

Massive online gift card raffle for books and supplies. Open to students currently enrolled in French classes, undergraduate and graduate. Many prizes available. Enter the raffle here (use your address) by September 7 at 4:30pm.

Interested in becoming a French minor, major, or graduate student and taking advantage of programming such as this? Contact Dr. Elizabeth Emery ( or Kathleen Loysen ( for more information about declaring a minor or major in French. In the meanwhile, follow us on Twitter and Instagram @msufrench for more fall 2020 activities, in person and online. Drawing live (in French) via Zoom on Sept. 17 at 4:00 pm.

Randonnée dans la forêt

Tuesday, Sept. 8 from 4:30-6:00pm. Meet at Panzer Gym.

Speak French while making new friends and communing with nature. Depart Panzer gym at 4:30pm and bring masks for this hike in Mills Reservation.

RSVP here:

Pique-nique dans le parc

Monday, Sept. 14 from 1:45-3 on Student Center Quad, weather permitting.

Bring your own snack or choose from among our pre-packaged French treats. Practice your French while social distancing on the Student Center quad!

RSVP here:

Conference on women art dealers of Japanese art working in nineteenth-century France

September 21 at 12:30 pm. (via Zoom)

Conference on French women art dealers working in nineteenth-century France (with Dr. Emery). Write to if you are interested in participating. More information here.

Conference on Translation (with Dr. Claude Narcisse). “Translating the Future Finale: Postmonolingual New York with Ava Chin, Jasmine Claude-Narcisse, Damion Searls, and Lisandro Perez.” Wed, Sep 23, 2020, 06:00 PM – 07:30 PM. Register here.

Pique-nique dans le parc, October 5, 1:30 (live) Student Center quad south end (farthest away from Student Center)

Bring your own snack or choose from among our pre-packaged French treats. Practice your French while social distancing on the Student Center quad!

RSVP here:

Book Discussion with Profs. Rachel Mesch of Yeshiva University and Kirstin Ringelberg of Elon University. Friday, October 23 at 2:00pm. Professor Mesch lectured about her research at MSU last year: her new book, Before Trans: Three Gender Stories from Nineteenth-Century France, has now been published.  REGISTER

L’Ecole des Femmes (free Moliere in the Park livestreamed production). Oct. 24 at 2 and 7pm. Available on YouTube until Oct. 28. Great preparation for Mme Loysen’s spring class!

Graduate School Open House. Sunday, October 25.

Sign up to learn more about graduate programs in teaching and translation. Receive a free waiver of the admissions fee!

Chasse au trésor (French Scavenger Hunt), October 12 [rescheduled to Nov. 2], 1:00pm.

Take a virtual tour of France while going on a treasure hunt around MSU! Practice your French by following clues (en francais) that lead you to QR codes posted around campus, each one giving information about a different city in France. All levels of French welcome!  First person to complete the circuit wins an Amazon gift card. Snacks for runners up.

Meet at the end of the quad nearest Finley Hall. If it’s raining, bring an umbrella. We will be under the awning between Finley and Schmitt.

RSVP here:

Fall Streaming Film Clips and Conversation

To RSVP for films, please fill out this form and a Zoom link will be sent to you in advance of the event.

October 6 at 6:00pm. Bon Voyage (romance/comédie, dir. Jean-Paul Rappeneau) [postponed from Sept. 29]

“At the start of World War II, the fate of the free world hangs in the balance at the posh Hotel Splendide in Bordeaux. Cabinet members, journalists, physicists, and spies of all persuasions gather in order to escape the Nazi occupation of Paris. High society socialites hobnob with jailbirds. Murderous intrigues, scientific secrets and love affairs flourish.” (Rotten Tomatoes)

“En juin 1940, à l’hôtel Splendid de Bordeaux sont réunis ministres, journalistes, grands bourgeois, demi-mondaines et espions de tous bords. Là, un jeune homme devra choisir entre une célèbre actrice et une étudiante passionnée, entre les politiques et les voyous, entre l’insouciance et l’âge adulte.” (Allociné)

October 20 at 6:00 p.m. L’Homme du train (Policier/dramatique, dir. Patrice Leconte)

“Two men from two different walks of life develop an unexpected friendship in French director Patrice Leconte’s 2002 comedy-drama The Man on the Train. Weary from his trip and in anticipation of the heist he’s about to perform, Milan (French rock star Johnny Hallyday) steps off the train after arriving in the small town where he’s to meet his co-conspirators and heads straight to the town pharmacy. After accidentally buying the wrong product, Milan makes the acquaintance of retired teacher Manesquier (Jean Rochefort), who offers to help the traveler and then promptly begins talking ad nauseum. Milan, after paying partial attention to the old man’s ramblings, excuses himself to find accommodations — only to run into Manesquier once more after learning that the hotel has closed for the night. As the two men talk, they develop a respect for one another, as well as a secret longing to live the type of lifestyle the other man lives based on the desire to escape their own.” (Rotten Tomatoes)

“Un mystérieux étranger descend d’un train et fait son apparition dans une petite ville. Cet individu au visage marqué, ayant pour unique bagage un sac de voyage, entre dans une pharmacie sur le point de fermer pour acheter de l’aspirine. Il fait alors la rencontre d’un professeur de français à la retraite qui lui propose de prendre un verre d’eau chez lui. Alors que tout les oppose, ils vont sympathiser et se rendre compte que l’un aurait voulu avoir la vie de l’autre. L’ancien enseignant se rêvait aventurier, tandis que le voyageur s’envisageait pantouflard.” (Allociné)

Nov. 17 @ 6pm  – Cléo de 5 à 7 (dramatique/musique, dir. Agnès Varda)

“A spoiled and beautiful young pop singer wanders across Paris while awaiting the results of a medical test that may show she has cancer.” (Rotten Tomatoes)

“Cléo, belle et chanteuse, attend les résultats d’une analyse médicale. De la superstition à la peur, de la rue de Rivoli au Café de Dôme, de la coquetterie à l’angoisse, de chez elle au Parc Montsouris, Cléo vit quatre-vingt-dix minutes particulières. Son amant, son musicien, une amie puis un soldat lui ouvrent les yeux sur le monde.” (Allociné)


Updated 10/18/20