Conferences: Translating COVID-19 in Australia (Call for Papers) and Diversity, Decolonization, and the French Curriculum (Registration)


Australian Society for French Studies members may be interested in the following two conferences in November 2020, organised by ASFS members:

Translating COVID-19 in Australia (Call for Papers)

Proposals for short contributions (8-10 minutes) are welcome for this symposium that seeks to investigate the translation of COVID-19 across languages and cultures in Australia, through contributions dealing with:

-the neologisms, metaphors, and the practices of translation in the context of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

– the challenges of the linguistic and cultural translation of prevention measures in various contexts, e.g. first nations communities, migrant populations, refugees, linguistic minorities, across social classes, gender…

The purpose of these round tables will be to foster productive discussions around the ways in which the pandemic has reframed our cultural practices through the lens of language.

Conference organized by Caroline Lipovsky, Michelle Royer and Nathalie Ségeral, Department of French and Francophone Studies, The University of Sydney.

Submissions (approximately 150 words) due by 30 September 2020 to Symposium to be held on Friday 6 November 2020. 

Diversity, Decolonization, and the French Curriculum (Registration)

Dr. Siham Bouamer (Sam Houston State University) and Dr. Loic Bourdeau (University of Louisiana, Lafayette) are pleased to announce that registration for the first (virtual) conference on “Diversity, Decolonization, and the French Curriculum” (Nov. 13-14, 2020) is now open on

Please find below a list of all the panels/topics. A detailed program is available online. You are welcome to register for as many panels as you wish. We would like to draw special attention to the keynote by Professor Hanétha Vété-Congolo: “Decolonizing the White French Curriculum: Which Ethics?” (Saturday, 14 November 2020, 9:30am-10:30am Central-US Time).

– A Conversation about French Accents

– Accessibility/Ableism

– Beginner and Intermediate Courses

– Black Lives Matter in the French Curriculum

– Defining “francophonie”

– Discussing the Colonial Past

– French Outside the Classroom

– French Programs

– French/Francophone Icons

– Gender Issues/Queer Curriculum

– Intersectional/Inclusive French Studies

– K-12 French Education

– On Textbooks and Beyond

– Roundtable discussion with the Diversity, Decolonization, and German Curriculum Collective

– Social Media and Multimodal Instruction

– “Talking Back”: Engaging Students with New Perspectives in French

– Teaching French Abroad

Call for applications: National Recognition for Outstanding Teachers of French in Australia

FATFA prize

The Federation of Associations of Teachers of French in Australia (FATFA), the Embassy of France and SBS French radio have announced a new prize for ‘National recognition for outstanding teachers of French in Australia’. From FATFA:

“This year, to promote the profession of « professeur de français » and to celebrate the international « Journée du prof de français » on 26 November 2020, FATFA would like to officially recognise outstanding teachers of French at a national level, in conjunction with the Ambassade de France, SBS French radio, state Teachers of French Associations: AFTV, MLATQ, NATF, SAFTA, TOFAWA and the ASFS.

Do you know amazing teachers who show great enthusiasm and passion for their profession? Teachers who motivate, inspire their students with innovative teaching practices, and support and empower their colleagues? You can nominate a teacher in one of these 2 categories: Prix du jeune espoir – Young Hope Award or Prix du prof de français de l’année (expert).”

ASFS members should note that there is a category for university teachers of French. Applicants can nominate a colleague or self-nominate with a referee.

Consult the flyer here for criteria and application details, and submit your nomination by 30 September 2020 to Sabine Kuuse ( and Diane de Saint Leger (

Call for Papers: Australian Society for French Studies Virtual Conference, ‘Dis/connexion’, 3-4 December 2020

Conference Banner: ASFS 2020

Call for Papers

Australian Society for French Studies



 3-4 December

 In light of the current situation, the ASFS has had to come to the inevitable decision of postponing the conference that was scheduled to take place in New Zealand this year, to 2021. In order to maintain a sense of community, and academic discussions around our research and future, the ASFS Conference will move online in a shorter format for 2020.

During a time of social distancing, in which we are requested to “Stay Apart Together”, the ASFS 2020 conference will bring members together to reflect upon the theme of connection and disconnection.

We invite proposals for papers and panels related to the conference theme. Papers may reflect upon, but are not limited to:

  • The role of the Humanities in general, and of language, literature and culture in particular, during times of crisis and social unrest
  • Literary, artistic and cinematic representations of connection and disconnection
  • The dis/connection between World and national literatures, cinema and history, and other forms of transnational connections
  • The Medical Humanities and the ethics of care
  • The Digital Humanities
  • Language pedagogy and (dis)connection
  • Interdisciplinary connections (and their limits)

Paper presentations will be scheduled for 10 minutes. Panels will be scheduled for 45 minutes, with 3 presentations and discussion.

The conference will be free to all members of the ASFS. Presenters will be required to join the Society by 1 November.

The Postgraduate Session will take place on the morning of 3 December via Zoom, led by Postgraduate Officer Dr Clara Sitbon. The Postgraduate Session is free and open to all members.

The conference will feature keynotes and round tables, will include different formats for special events, and will incorporate social spaces such as a virtual coffee room running alongside and between panels.

We hope that this will allow members to continue to engage with the ASFS activities and with each other in these trying times.

Deadline for submitting paper and panel proposals: 1 September 2020 to Dr Leslie Barnes, Secretary:

 Appel à communications

Australian Society for French Studies



 3-4 décembre

Au vu de la situation actuelle, l’ASFS a dû prendre la difficile décision de repousser sa conférence annuelle, qui devait initialement se tenir en Nouvelle-Zélande en décembre cette année, à 2021. Pour maintenir un sentiment de communauté, et pour poursuivre les importantes discussions qui conditionnent notre rechercheet notre avenir, l’ASFS souhaite maintenir une version virtuelle de sa conférence, dans un format plus court.

A une époque de distanciation sociale, où nous sommes exhortés à être distancés ensemble, l’édition 2020 de la conférence ASFS entend rassembler ses membres autour de réflexions sur les thèmes de connexion et déconnexion.

L’ASFS invite des propositions de communications autour de ces deux thèmes. Les communications peuvent aborder les éléments suivants, sans pour autant y être exclusivement limitées :

  • Le rôle des Sciences Humaines (Humanities), des langues, de la littérature et de la culture, en temps de crise et de troubles sociaux
  • Représentations littéraires, artistiques, cinématographiques de connexions et déconnexions
  • La dé/connexion entre les littératures, cinémas, histoires nationales et nationaux, et les littératures, cinémas et histoires du monde, ainsi que d’autres formes de connections transnationales
  • Les Humanités Médicales et l’éthique de la compassion
  • Les Humanités Numériques
  • Pédagogie linguistique et (dé)connexion
  • Connections interdisciplinaires (et leurs limites)

Les communications seront de dix minutes chacune, et les panels de 45 minutes chacun (pour trois présentations et discussions).

La conférence sera entièrement gratuite pour les membres de l’ASFS. Si vous n’êtes pas membres de la société mais que vous souhaitez présenter une communication, vous devrez joindre la société avant le 1er novembre 2020.

La session dédiée aux étudiants de troisième cycle aura lieu le matin du 3 décembre via Zoom, et sera coordonnée par Dr Clara Sitbon (Postgraduate Officer). Cette session est gratuite et ouverte à tous les membres.

La conférence comprendra des séances plénières et tables rondes, mêlera une variété de formats pour divers événements, et inclura des espaces sociaux virtuels (cafés virtuels) en parallèle et entre les différentes sessions.

Nous espérons que cela permettra aux membres de continuer à s’impliquer dans les activités de l’ASFS, et les un.e.s avec les autres durant ces moments difficiles.

Les propositions de communications et de panels sont à envoyer avant le 1er septembre 2020, à la secrétaire de la société, Dr Leslie Barnes (

Call for initiatives: AFRAN, the Australian-French Association for Research and Innovation

ASFS members are encouraged to join AFRAN, the Australian-French Association for Research and Innovation, which is supported by the French Embassy of Australia.


AFRAN has just announced their call for applications for funding under the 2020 initiatives scheme. Funding of up to $4,000 (from a pool of $20,000) is available for projects that strengthen French-Australian research relations. This year’s call for initiatives places a particular emphasis on multi-disciplinary collaborations with social sciences and the humanities. Membership is free and details for the scheme are available here.

From the AFRAN website:


This year’s call seeks to further empower the AFRAN community by supporting initiatives that complement those already eligible for funding under the suite of cooperation support mechanisms provided by the French Embassy in Australia (e.g. mobility, internships, or workshops). In 2020/2021, we will thus fund initiatives or series of smaller, integrated initiatives (e.g. series of network building activities, one-off or series of collaborative research exhibitions or productions, symposia/workshops focussed on community development) designed to federate, build and scale up thematic communities around particular research and innovation areas within the perimeter of AFRAN and/or between France and Australia. In the 2020/2021 call, there is a particular emphasis on inter-disciplinary initiatives, including with the social sciences and humanities.

For further information, please contact:


A/Prof Katherine Daniell
President, AFRAN Inc.

Embassy of France
Ms. Nathalie Simenel-Amar
Service Science and Technology
02 6216 0139

ASFS News: Statement on Higher Education Funding, Support for DECRA Applicants and Extension of Postgraduate Prize Deadline

Australian Society for French Studies statement on Higher Education funding

The Australian Society for French Studies is extremely concerned over the proposed changes in Higher Education funding. While many disciplines across HASS and STEM subjects will be negatively affected by the proposed changes, Humanities disciplines will be hardest hit. While we welcome the government’s recognition that English and languages can contribute significantly to students’ employability, it is our strongly held view that all Humanities disciplines do so. Modern Languages, the area in which we mostly work, includes disciplines such as history, film studies, philosophy and cultural studies, which are destined to suffer especially under these proposed measures. We are concerned for the Humanities, for the University sector in general, and for the students we serve.

We echo the sentiments of Prof. Joy Damousi, President of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, who commented “Evidence shows that the skills and knowledge from humanities and social sciences training – including critical thinking, communication skills and understanding the impact of change on humanity – are highly valued by employers and in the workforce. There is a clear disconnect in the government’s thinking around the issue of qualifications and employment. Disincentivising studies in humanities courses will actually have the opposite effect to that intended by the government. It will directly and adversely impact the government’s future jobs agenda.”

Importantly, the Australian Academy of Science has expressed similar reservations, stating that “The Australian Academy of Science stands with the nation’s other learned academies in expressing concerns about the implications of the announced package across all scientific and academic disciplines. Our society needs scientists, but it would be poorer if not for people educated in the arts, social sciences, management, commerce, law and the humanities. Scientists know that all knowledge is multidisciplinary, and a system that silos knowledge and values one sort of knowledge over another will fail Australians.”

We believe that disincentivising the study of the Humanities impoverishes our students, our workforce and the future competitivity of our nation. Amidst the current crisis and the inevitable rethinking of global relations, such a move is even more concerning.

We call on Members of Parliament to develop an equitable funding policy that awards choices and intellectual opportunities to all of our students.

Support to our DECRA applicants

The ASFS is committed to supporting our ECR members, whom we consider to be the future of our discipline. In the spirit of the formal mentoring program the ASFS is developing this year, we would like to extend our support to ECR members with their DECRA applications. If any of you would like support in the process of writing your rejoinders, due 7 July 2020, please email President Natalie Edwards at

ASFS/AJFS Postgraduate Essay Prize: Deadline Extended

The deadline for the ASFS/AJFS Postgraduate Essay Prize has been extended to 31 July 2020. Please submit your articles to Postgraduate Officer Dr Clara Sitbon at

Call for Papers: ASFS/AJFS Postgraduate Essay Prize 2020

ASFS black and white logoThe Australian Society for French Studies and the Australian Journal of French Studies are pleased to announce the sixth annual co-sponsored ASFS/AJFS Postgraduate Essay Prize.

A prize of AU$500 will be awarded to the best article (4,000 to 6,000 words including notes) on any aspect of French Studies (except French Language Studies) by a postgraduate student. The winning essay will be published in the Australian Journal of French Studies.

Submission Guidelines

  • Entries are open to anyone enrolled in a Masters or PhD in an Australian or New Zealand university on the date of the submission deadline,
  • All applicants must be members of the Society,
  • Essays on any aspect of French and Francophone Studies (French language Studies) will be considered,
  • Essays must be an original piece of work not already under consideration for publication elsewhere,
  • Essays must not exceed 6,000 words and must be presented according to the AJFS Guidelines for Contributors,
  • Essays must be anonymised and not include the candidate’s name, that of their supervisors or institution,
  • Essays should be submitted to the Postgraduate Officer along with the submission form,
  • A panel of 3 members of the Society will evaluate all applications. The panel members will be selected from institutions other than those at which the applicants are candidates, and
  • All applicants will receive written feedback from the panel.

The following prizes will be awarded to the winner:

  • Publication of the winning essay in Australian Journal of French Studies, subject to the journal’s refereeing,
  • A certificate award at the annual ASFS conference, and
  • A cash prize of AU$500 jointly awarded by the ASFS and AJFS.

Deadline for submissions : 30 June 2020.

Submissions and enquiries should be directed to ASFS’s Postgraduate Officer, Clara Sitbon (

ASFS Mentorship Program 2020


This year, the Australian Society for French Studies is launching a mentorship program for colleagues seeking extra support in their careers. Colleagues may seek mentorship for a specific professional goal, such as a promotion application, job search or grant application, and mentees may include but are not limited to postgraduate and ECR candidates. Mentees will be paired with a suitable member of the Society able to advise on their goals, and each pair will decide how often and where to communicate (ex. skype, email) depending on their needs. This is an informal and collegial initiative designed to support colleagues at a range of stages in their academic careers.

If you are already an ASFS member, check your email for details on how to apply. If you are interested in joining the Society and taking part in the program, you can apply for membership here.

President’s Welcome 2020

Dear ASFS members,

‘Unprecedented’ seems to be the word of 2020. From the bushfires that ravaged the country at the beginning of the year to the current spread of COVID-19, the first three months of this year have affected daily life in many unexpected ways.

We first send our solidarity to all our members. Many of us are currently grappling with new ways of delivering course content, new modes of communicating with colleagues, new forms of postgraduate supervision and new budgetary constraints. We as scholars of the Humanities are experts in adaptation; innovating our teaching and research is, after all, the core of our professional activity. Yet, the innovation demanded of us now in order to do our best for our students and colleagues is… unprecedented. The Society aims to offer support to its members during this time and we urge you to contact us with your concerns.

In particular, the Society has several members who are experts in online teaching who are happy to share their experiences. The MLA has also developed a list of resources that may be of help:

Moreover, as many of us are being encouraged to work from home, the Society is very willing to offer support. Working from home presents issues for many of us and we urge members to take additional care of their physical and mental health. We are particularly concerned for our postgraduates, ECRs and members on casual contracts. Members may be interested to read the recent article on WFH from the Campus Morning Mail:

At present we are continuing to make plans for our 2020 conference: 1-4 December at Te Herenga Waka/Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. We have all been looking forward to holding our first conference in New Zealand. Our colleagues Jean Anderson, Charles Rice-Davis, Yuri Cerqueira dos Anjos and France Grenaudier-Klijn have already done a remarkable amount of preparatory work. We will continue to monitor the situation in order to ensure the safety of our members.

Let’s also take a moment to think back to our wonderful 2019 conference in Parramatta, Sydney, and to thank Valentina Gosetti, Chris Andrews and Sophie Patrick for their creativity, organisation and academic generosity. Many of us have very fond memories of the panels, the plenary sessions, the conviviality and the amazing dinner under the Sydney Harbour bridge.

Let’s also again thank our outgoing President Véronique Duché, who led the Society with enthusiasm and aplomb for two years, and our outgoing Postgraduate Office Sophie Patrick, who organised postgraduate sessions and prizes for several years. I am grateful to the members who have agreed to serve on the Executive Committee this year: Ben McCann (Vice President), Chris Hogarth (Treasurer), Leslie Barnes (Secretary), Gemma King (Editor of Publications) and Clara Sitbon (Postgraduate Officer). Gemma has already made several changes to the Society’s website, including resources and publications, and increased our social media presence. I encourage you to bookmark our site ( and to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

We will soon be in touch with two initiatives for this year: a survey of our current members and the mentoring program we discussed at the 2019 AGM. We will also be holding our annual Postgraduate Essay prize, co-sponsored by the Australian Journal for French Studies, to be announced shortly. For now, please take good care of yourselves and each other and let us know how we can help.

Warm wishes,

Natalie Edwards

ASFS President

Applications due soon for 2020 Nicolas Baudin Travel Grant

Applications are now open for the French Embassy in Australia’s 2020 Nicolas Baudin Travel Grant to support student mobility to France. Students can apply as part of an exchange to France through their Australian university, or to pursue a full degree at a French university, including cotutelle double degrees for PhD candidates.

Applications are due via the Embassy’s online portal by April 15. Details can be found on the Embassy website; click here.


Society of French Studies 2020 Visiting International Fellowship

Applications are currently open for our UK partner organisation the Society of French Studies’ 2020 Visiting International Fellowship Program. Applications are due April 1 2020.


From the SFS:

In the light of its commitment to international mobility within French Studies, the Society offers funding for a grant to support an annual Visiting International Fellowship, tenable in any UK or Irish university, or institution of higher education in the UK or Ireland, to enable outstanding academics in the French Studies field based in overseas universities to spend time at UK or Irish higher education institutions.

More details can be found at the SFS website; click here to find out more.

Links to all our partner organisations in Australia and overseas can be found on the ASFS website under Organisations.