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Highlight on the week of French language: Yanick Lahens' Collège de France inaugural lecture

The International Week of French Language and Francophonie is back! As you may know, the 20th of March is the international Francophonie day, on which we celebrate the aura of the French language in France and all over the world. But as a simple day is not enough to celebrate the diversity and richness of the French language, we will dedicate a whole week to the celebration of the French language and Francophonie. On that occasion, the Institut Français will be hosting events revolving around the French language from the 16th until the 24th of March 2019.

As a highlight of that week, we are very happy to announce that our brand-new website will feature the live broadcasting of Yanick Lahens’ inaugural lecture at the Collège de France. To follow that event, you will need to visit our website on the 21st of March at 6pm.

Yanick Lahens is a Haitian writer who will inaugurate the ‘Francophone worlds’ academic chair at the prestigious institution. The creation of this new chair was announced last summer. Its first titular, Yanick Lahens, was appointed for the academic year 2018-2019, saluted by the Collège de France as a remarkable personality of literature and culture in French language. Her inaugural lecture will be entitled 'Urgence(s) d’écrire, rêve(s) d’habiter', revolving around the themes of literature, writing, and the idea of belonging.

She was born in Haiti and moved to France where she embraced a career as a prolific novelist. She notably won the 2014 Femina prize for her novel Bain de lune (Sabine Wespieser, 2014), which chronicles the history of a family in rural Haiti over four generations. She has been working between Haiti and France, and she has shown a strong involvement in literature, university work but also in socio-political and civic activism. She created a foundation for youth on social questions in 2008, and was involved in associations supporting the development of libraries. She was also a member of the international congress for francophone studies, organism founded by north American universities. Her much awaited inaugural lecture will therefore be incredibly rich, drawing on her various experiences.

Alongside this event, the Institut Français will host various other displays to (re)discover the extents of the Francophonie. An event – and a week! – that is not to be missed for us Francophiles!

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