The French and Italian Department of Romance Studies at the Hebrew University provides an intensive training in French and / or Italian languages, literary, history, theory, and criticism, the Department links the study of literature to broader issues in philosophy, history and cultural history. This commitment to interdisciplinary work can be seen in the profiles of our faculty, whose training and teaching encompass literature, history, critical theory, and continental philosophy. The tradition of interrogating the relationship between literature and other cultural domains gives French and Italian at the Hebrew University a particularly sharp perspective on the importance of the humanistic studies today.
The Department of French and Italian - the Romance Studies - offers students the opportunity to pursue course work at all levels in the languages, cultures, literatures, and intellectual histories of the French and Italian traditions. Whether interested in French and Francophone studies, Italian studies, or in both, students will find a broad range of courses covering language acquisition, literary topics, history and criticism, cultural history and theory, continental philosophy. The Department's course aims to reflect a conscious effort by its Faculty to encounter the needs of undergraduate and graduate students. The undergraduate majors in French or Italian provide a comprehensive study of their respective literatures and cultures, establishing a solid basis for potential advanced studies in literature or history. At the graduate level, M.A. and Ph.D. degrees are offered.
The curriculum is also designed to benefit students with varying interests and levels of language proficiency. Students interested in international relations, European history, Middle East Studies, Asian Studies and Comparative literature, film studies, philosophy, and postcolonial studies will find relevant courses within the Department's offerings. In addition to its courses, the Department seeks to promote cultural understanding and dialogue in different ways: The Italian table and the French Table meetings. It oversees the undergraduate fellowships for Language courses in Paris, in Rome and in Siena, which provide an immersion into the experience of French and Italian culture. The Department also invites frequent guest lecturers in French and Italian studies throughout the academic year, maintaining a regular schedule of extracurricular events. For students interested in studying abroad, the Department plays an important role in the Erasmus Exchange Program in France and in Italy. These programs, open to all students who complete the required language preparation, extend the educational spectrum well beyond textbooks and classrooms, and provide students with invaluable cultural and life experience.