Duke University Honors a Pioneering Woman Scholar in Romance Studies

An anonymous donor has contributed funds to Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, to establish an endowed chair in the Department of Romance Studies to honor Anne-Marie Bryan. Professor Bryan was one of the first women faculty members in the department. The endowed chair in French and Francophone studies is the first in the department’s history.

Professor Bryan taught French language courses at Duke from the 1960s to the 1980s. She was known for inspiring students to speak and write confidently in French as a way to engage them in the culture, history and literature. She authored four books on the linguistic approach that promoted oral and written competency.

The Anne-Marie Bryan Professorship will make it possible for the department to recruit an exceptional faculty member to spearhead those efforts, said Gennifer Weisenfeld, dean of the humanities. “An endowed chair offers a perfect opportunity to catalyze the next phase of innovation. It will ensure recruiting an inventive, accomplished colleague from the vanguard of today’s scholars in a way that a standard tenure-track position cannot,” Dr. Weisenfeld said.

Anne-Marie Bryan died in 1999.

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