French-Speaking Worlds: Then and Now

Active Research Group

The French-Speaking Worlds: Then and Now research group will further the studies and research that began with the French Culture Workshop. The group will examine the histories, literatures, and cultures of the various French-speaking worlds that have developed from the 16th century to the 21st century. 

The French language is spoken across five continents and three oceans, with approximately 300 million people speaking it as either a first or second language worldwide. It is the official language of many countries in Africa, the Caribbean and Europe and is widely spoken and taught as a second language in Asia, North and South America, and Oceania. In choosing the name “French-Speaking Worlds: Then and Now,” this group aims to signal the intellectual stakes of re-conceptualizing French Studies as “French-Speaking World(s).” 

The group therefore plans to investigate the transnational, global, local, historical, social, and literary pasts and presents of this extraordinary constellation. It is envisioned as a space where diverse intellectual dialogues and the contested spaces they create can be fully embraced and explored in all their complexity. 

The series aims at cross-pollination between different fields and disciplines and will present cutting edge work of interest to scholars and students in History, Political Science, Religious Studies, Race and Ethnicity Studies, Gender and Feminist Studies, French Studies, Law and Philosophy, South-Eastern Studies, Oceanic Studies, Migration Studies, among others.

The French-Speaking Worlds: Then and Now is co-sponsored by the DLCL Research Unit, the France-Stanford Center, and Stanford Global Studies.



Graduate Coordinators