Tag Archives: Events

Summer 2017 with the French Heritage Society

A hearty congratulations to Naomi Jabouin, a Bowdoin College undergraduate, and Cameron Flynn, a University of Michigan undergraduate ! These two current students of the Middlebury College School in France program (Naomi in Bordeaux and Cameron in Paris) were recently informed of their acceptance in the French Heritage Society’s summer internship program (http://frenchheritagesociety.org/). Each year, this non-profit organization sends anglophone students into châteaux throughout France to work as bilingual guides. The lucky interns have the opportunity to improve their French, deepen their understanding of the nation’s patrimony and gain some firsthand experience in cultural tourism. Ms. Jabouin will be working this summer at the château de Fontainebleau, while Mr. Flynn has been placed in the château d’Acquigny and the château de Montréal.

Beast, Animal, Brute

Inspired by the 18th century French philosopher Denis Diderot’s massive, thirty-five volume Encyclopédie, the current exhibition in Special Collections & Archives reveals our enduring curiosity of animals through a selection of rare and unusual books dating from the 17th through the 20th centuries.

The Lamia, a mythical demon from ancient Greece who devoured children, from Edward Topsell’s The historie of foure-footed beastes, 1607

 

Other works on display include Edward Topsell’s The historie of foure-footed beastes, published in 1607 in London (and possibly one of  William Shakespeare’s literary sourcebooks) and a polar bear as described by Captain James Cook, the British explorer, in the 18th century, upon arrival in the Russian Arctic Circle.

Zoology of New York, or the New-York fauna : comprising detailed descriptions of all the animals hitherto observed within the state of New York, with brief notices of those occasionally found near its borders, and accompanied by appropriate illustrations, by James De Kay, 1842-44

Also on exhibit in the Davis Family Library: Banned and Banished: Ovid and 2,000 Years of Exile curated by Mikaela Taylor.

Monet and Giverny!

We need only say ‘Giverny’ to lose ourselves in thoughts of fresh scents, rich colors, gorgeous light … No wonder the Impressionist Claude Monet chose this lovely retreat to develop, right up to the end of his life, his chosen arts of painting and gardening. Ten days ago, a number of students from our Paris program stepped into the sensual universe of this grand painter, visiting his house at Giverny along with its garden and famous pond. They were even able to see the special studio Monet made to undertake his Water Lilies, the legendary cycle that currently hangs in the Orangerie museum in Paris. Making the most of the nice weather, they finished the day with a long walk to the neighboring village of Vernon. Many thanks to Lucy and Julie who accompanied the students during the visit.

Pantheon Visit for Students in French Secularism History

On May 3, students in the Middlebury Paris program visited the Pantheon, that illustrious Parisian monument where lie the great men (as, as of recently, the great ladies) of France. This visit concluded the course “French Secularism” given by Professor Nicolas Roussellier. Students were able to enjoy a very interesting and informative tour, led by Dr. Roussellier, who was particularly interested in the history of the Pantheon and its evolution throughout the centuries. We took the time to dwell at length inside the monument to observe its frescoes and tombs. A big thank you to Mr. Nicolas Roussellier for this high quality tour.

Faculty News: WWI Commemoration

For the commemorations marking the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of the Chemin des Dames Ridge, Sunday April 16th in the region of Aisne, historian and School in France faculty member, André Loez, found himself explaining to the Head of State, President François Hollande, the failed French assault on the Germans. For the official press release : http://www.elysee.fr/communiques-de-presse/article/centenaire-de-la-bataille-du-chemin-des-dames/ .

Que du bonheur! Wine, cheese and happiness

Students, faculty and staff gathered together last week for an evening of wine and cheese tasting. Annie-Claude Motron shared insight on French wine, how it’s classified by the region it comes from rather than the type of grape used to make it, before inviting everyone to explore the impressive selection of Bordeaux, Corsican, Burgandy whites and reds and to pair them with lots of cheese and bread :).

A tribute to Barbara Jordan on her birthday

In celebration of Black History Month, we remember Barbara Jordan’s 1987 Commencement address at Middlebury. She received an Honorary Doctor of Laws and spoke about values in education and those which members of society should agree to live by: Truth, Tolerance, Respect, and Community.

Other photos of the commencement ceremony show Prof. David Rosenberg, Professor Emeritus of Political Science, handing out diplomas. He remembered about her speech, “She shared many historical and philosophical comments on principles and values to guide our commencing graduates. But the biggest applause and laughter came near the end when she quoted from Robert Fulghum’s essay, “All I ever really needed to know I learned in Kindergarten.” It was a good way to acknowledge the critical role parents play at an early and formative stage in the lives of our graduates long before they arrive at Middlebury.”

The former congresswoman showed her Texas pride from the commencement podium with the the University of Texas’s “hook ’em horns” hand symbol. After retiring from politics in 1979, she taught ethics at the University of Texas until her death in 1996.

Born in Houston, Texas exactly 81 years ago, Jordan earned her law degree from Boston University in 1959 and was elected to the Texas Senate in 1966, becoming the first African-American state senator since 1883 and the first black woman to hold the seat. In 1972, she was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, making her the first woman to represent Texas in the House, and (in the same year) as president pro tempore of the Texas senate, the first black woman in America to preside over a legislative body.

She solidified herself as a household name while serving on the House Judiciary Committee during President Richard Nixon’s impeachment scandal. Delivered the opening remarks to the committee and the nation, she supported the articles of impeachment against the president. In her speech she held up her faith in the Constitution and declared that if her fellow committee members failed to impeach President Nixon,“then perhaps the eighteenth–century Constitution should be abandoned to a twentieth–century paper shredder.”

She extended her rhetorical capabilities to Middlebury College in 1987, undeterred by the multiple sclerosis that would ultimately kill her, delivering the address from a wheelchair.

 

Source: “Jordan, Barbara Charline | US House of Representatives: History, Art & Archives.” Accessed February 21, 2017. http://history.house.gov/People/Detail/16031.