Romance Languages and Literatures

Romance Languages and Literatures offers vibrant programs in French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish. Our language courses have long been popular with undergraduates, including those interested in international travel and those who anticipate a global dimension to their future careers. All of our classes focus on culture writ large: we study great texts, and we do so with an eye toward gender roles, traditions, communities, individual freedom, social obligations and many other topics of critical importance today. We offer concentrations in French, Italian, Spanish, applied linguistics, and introductory Portuguese.

Our undergraduate programs in French, Italian, and Spanish include a compelling series of language, literature, culture, and civilization courses that introduce students to the global Hispanic, Francophone, and Italophone communities. The curriculum affords students the opportunity to become fluent in a foreign language, enrich their historical and cultural understanding, and acquaint themselves with influential intellectual, literary, and artistic traditions.

Students also benefit from linguistic and cultural immersion opportunities through our many summer, semester, and year-long study abroad programs. These programs offer unique possibilities to combine foreign language training with other interests, including participating in business internships in Paris; pursuing fieldwork in Cameroon; or studying art history in Italy, literature in Madrid, or Andean culture in Ecuador. These experiences lead to a variety of career paths, including international law, international business, medicine, journalism, and graduate studies in political science, international relations, history, anthropology, art history, comparative literature, French, and film studies. To prepare our students to take full advantage of such opportunities, our faculty provides an innovative range of courses that combine the study of literature with contemporaneous developments in philosophy, science, music, art, and theory.

For undergraduates interested in cross-language study, we offer two programs. Students may elect to major in Romance languages and literatures. This major requires advanced course work in French, Italian, and Spanish, with one of the three languages as the focus of primary emphasis. Alternatively, students may minor in applied linguistics, studying the theoretical, empirical, and practical foundations of teaching and learning languages. This minor is available to all majors on campus, but it is particularly suited to language majors.

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