Welcome to the ASMCF website
“The Association is established to advance and develop research and education concerning modern and contemporary France in the United Kingdom.” - The Constitution
Since its foundation in 1979 members of the Association for the Study of Modern and Contemporary France have seen expansion, retraction and reorganisation of the teaching of French in higher education. Throughout the past thirty years it has provided a forum for those involved in teaching and researching modern France and the Francophone world.
Many of the founding members (among them Douglas Johnson, Brian Darling, Peter Morris, Eric Cahm, David Hanley, Siân Reynolds, David Bell, Brian Jenkins and Tony Chafer) were from a historical and political background and sought to combine forces with UK colleagues working across disciplines and sometimes departments on new combinations of French Studies such as history, politics, geography and cinema, alongside innovative methods of teaching the language. Many staff in departments of History and Social Sciences as well as newly created languages departments in the Polytechnic sector joined the association and contributed to its vibrancy.
An annual three-day conference has been held every year at a university venue since 1979. The current membership reflects that historical diversity of academic disciplines and departments in higher and further education in the UK but also the increasing numbers of international subscriptions: our journal is currently selling very well to overseas HE library subscriptions.
Our association has three main areas of activity: the annual conference, publication of the journal and increasingly supporting local and regional research initiatives. Further information on past, current and future activities are available on this web site.
Chers Collègues, Chères Collègues,
Welcome to the ASMCF website. I am delighted to have been elected as the Association’s sixth honorary president and am honoured to be following in the footsteps of my illustrious predecessors, Jan Windebank, Maíre Cross, David Hanley, Siân Reynolds and the late Douglas Johnson. I have benefitted immensely from membership of the Association over the course of my career serving on the Editorial Board of our journal Modern & Contemporary France (2011-2016) and the ASMCF Executive Committee as Honorary Secretary (2014-16), co-editing three themed issues of the journal and co-organising three conferences as part of the ASMCF-affiliated French Media Research Group.
I would encourage members to take full advantage of all that the Association has to offer:
The annual conferences are academically stimulating events with papers adopting a wide range of disciplinary approaches and high-profile invited speakers from France, regularly supported by the French Embassy, as well as the UK and further afield. They serve as a friendly and supportive environment for our postgraduate and early-career colleagues and are invariably good fun.
The Association relies on its members to serve on the Executive committee in order to thrive. The meetings of the Association have a unique friendly and co-operative atmosphere and I would encourage all members to consider putting themselves forward for posts as they arise – new colleagues bring new ideas to develop our Association.
Our journal Modern and Contemporary France is continuing to extend its international readership, particularly in North America and most recently in China. Vacancies on the Editorial Board are advertised every year and we encourage members to help promote the journal by submitting their work to it, encouraging colleagues to consider the journal as an outlet for their research papers, writing book reviews and accepting invitations to referee articles.
The Association organises a series of prize competitions every year and supports events organized by our members including conferences and seminars as well as outreach activities aimed at secondary school pupils and teachers. You will find details of our competitions and funding schemes in our website.
We encourage postgraduate membership of the Association by offering reduced rates for subscription to the journal, membership of the Association and attendance at our conferences.
I hope that I will meet many of you at our annual conference or other events.
Professor of French
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