L’Alliance Française of Northwestern Connecticut est une association ouverte à tous ceux qui s’intéressent à la langue française et aux cultures du monde francophone.
The Alliance Francaise of Northwestern Connecticut is an organization open to all those who have an interest in the French language and in the cultures of the francophone world.
Our Mission is to promote the French language and culture and foster friendly relationships between Francophones and Francophiles of all racial, national and ethnic origins.
The original Alliance Française was founded in 1883 in Paris by a group of eminent men, including the scientist Louis Pasteur, the diplomat Ferdinand de Lesseps, the writers Jules Verne and Ernest Renan, and the publisher Armand Colin. The Alliance Française is the largest network of French language and cultural centers in the world. There are:
- Over 800 Alliance chapters in the world
- Over 136 countries have at least one city with an Alliance Française
- Over 100 chapters in the United States
Our AFNWCT chapter, originally known as the Alliance Francaise of Waterbury, was founded by Mesdames Frederic Chase and Henry Wade in 1921 when francophile sentiments were very strong. Many prominent Waterbury area women were members: such as, Mesdames Carmody, Fecter, Goss, Kellogg, Munger, Whittemore and White and were often referred to as “Les Grandes Dames.”
Lectures, still a standard part of our educational programs, featured up-to-date discussions about French politics, and guest speakers were invited to explain the intricacies of the thoughts and writings of Camus, Sartre, Beauvoir and other French luminaries.
Our 160+ members come from more than 30 cities of Northwestern CT and represent the blending of two groups: an American community interested in experiencing French culture and the cultures of other French-speaking countries and a French community seeking to stay connected to their Francophone heritage.
The Alliance Française of Northwestern CT sponsors:
- French language courses for adults and children at all levels of learning
- French discussion groups at various times and places to help you practice your French
- French “Fêtes” such as the Beaujolais Nouveau in November, Chandeleur in February, Bastille Day in July and other traditional celebrations
- Friendly get-togethers featuring a “joie de vivre” attitude with delicious foods and wines
- Book and Ciné clubs, Pétanque, Cooking classes, a Scrabble club – all “en francais” bien sûr!
- A library and other resources for both native speakers and French students.
Whether you are a native or fluent French speaker, a student of the language, or an interested non-French speaker, you are welcome! You’re sure to discover new friendships, a fun atmosphere and find many ways to share your love of French!
I remember clearly my first Alliance Française event – a bus trip to Hartford for dinner in a French bistro followed by French Opera. I came home enthralled with having spoken French all evening! Meeting new people and making friends with others who share a love of the French language, has truly enriched my life and is the reason why I became a member.
In September 2014, we celebrated a huge landmark: the opening of our new Southbury AF Center and French Language School classroom. We continue to add classes, have increased our student population and are very appreciative of the dedication and enthusiasm of our French teachers!
Thanks to our French classes for all ages and levels and our interesting discussion groups and educational programs, we have increased our membership by 50% to over 160 members.
The Board continues to work hard for you and welcomes any and all assistance from those of you who wish to help us promote the French language and cultures of the Francophone world.
I invite you to check our website regularly to read the latest News, check out our Events Calendar and learn more about your organization. And in our quest to bring more value to our members, we invite you to use the Comments section on the What’s New page to share ideas for future programs and activities and suggest ways to help us remain a vibrant organization.
We’re moving forward and up, and we hope you’ll come along for the ride!
Quote from a renewing member:
“One of my first, and a favorite event, was the reading of original (French) poetry by then Taft School teacher, Brian Denyer. Next was the deligthful Gala, also at Taft. Even though my last French instruction dates back over 40 years, to my Georgetown university days, and Spanish is dominant in my mind, I have enjoyed execllent Alliance programs, movies and parties. The greatest joy of membership was meeting Marcy as she has become a dear friend.”
“All the recent activities and new programs sound marvelous. I look forward to becoming active again.”
Reponse de MLG: You’re right, Linda, Brian’s poetry event was inspiring. Thank you for sharing your memories and for renewing your membership!
Quote from a new member:
“My mother was a member of the AF when Dee Carmody & Marge Feeter were President. They formed a subgroup where everyone wrote papers. When I was around, my mother made me write hers because of my four years of college French. They were all having such fun! So, here I am, following in her footsteps!”
Thanks Susan, for sharing your story