School Stories: Diversity and Adversity in New French Film

Over 3 consecutive Mondays at 7 PM, on February 13, 20 and 27 (2017), the Williams Department of Romance Languages will screen 3 recent French films at Images Cinema:

Titled “School Stories: Diversity and Adversity in New French Film,” this year’s Williams College French Film Festival examines the challenges facing students and teachers both in and beyond the classroom. From immigrant children in the primary schools of Paris, to students of color in the secondary schools of Strasbourg, to student activists in the universities of France, these films dramatize the potential benefits and difficulties of French education, where teachers and students must negotiate the complexities of integration and assimilation, authority and resistance, faith and belief, gender and sexuality, race and ethnicity. Amid recent debates this year in both France and the United States on immigrants and refugees, misogyny and homophobia, racism and violence, these films serve as both cautionary tales and exemplary models for tolerance and intolerance in the classroom. Between the American presidential elections last fall and the upcoming French presidential elections this spring, we hope that this film festival on classroom diversity and adversity will encourage discussion and debate on the role of schools and education in France and beyond.

All films are in French with English subtitles, and are free and open to the public. Images Cinema is located at 50 Spring Street in Williamstown, MA. For more on these films and screenings, see: Images Cinema.

This festival is made possible with the generous support of the Williams College Department of Romance Languages, the Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, and the Dively Committee for Human Sexuality and Diversity. The festival was co-organized by Jane Canova of the Center for Foreign Languages and French Professors Annelle Curulla and Brian Martin who will introduce the films.


La Cour de Babel

La Belle saison

Qu’Allah bénisse la France!

French Film Festival Poster (2017)