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Grant number like: FV-50147-07

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Dickinson College (Carlisle, PA 17013-2896)
Nancy C. Mellerski (Project Director: March 2007 to June 2009)

Seminars for K-12 Educators
Education Programs

$112,317 (approved)
$112,317 (awarded)

Grant period:
10/1/2007 – 9/30/2008

Citizenship and Culture: French Identity in Crisis

A four-week summer seminar for fifteen French teachers on the construction of, and challenges to, French republican identity over the last two centuries.

This seminar will explore the construction of Republican identity in France and study challenges to the ideal, foundational French Republic since the Revolution of 1789 through its representations in art, theatre, essay and film. With this historical perspective, we will examine regional identities and languages from the viewpoint of language policy and the formation of the state, through autobiographical writings and essays and in debates on the European Charter on Regional and Minority Languages. We will then study how decolonization has brought new pressures on Republican universalism as the Muslim community asserts its cultural identity. The "Headscarf Affair," the most important drama in contemporary France, in which the wearing of religious clothing and symbols in school confronts the Republican sacrament of secularism, will constitute our second case study. Finally, we will devote time to studying the "fracture sociale" recently apparent in the upheavels in the French suburbs.