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The Bedford Summer Research scholarship

Our program has long been privileged to offer scholarships for French & Francophone Studies majors to study and do research abroad. Thanks to the generosity of a new donor, Ms. Nancy Bedford, we now have Bedford Research Scholarships, which allow our students to pursue a dream project over the summer. Students work with a faculty advisor who helps them refine their research question, locate primary sources in a Francophone country, analyze these materials, and communicate their findings.


Our first Bedford Scholar, Dawn Bangi '24, was interested in the representation of black bodies in French art as well as in the narratives that surround African artifacts in French museum presentations. She therefore spent two weeks in Paris, studying exhibits at the Musée du Quai Branly and ultimately writing an essay on a Senegalese mask that hung from the ceiling in a transparent resinous bubble.
The mask was isolated from its cultural context, Dawn noted, and it seemed to return her gaze and critically interrogate her subject position.bulle.jpg This installation got Dawn thinking about the vibrant nature of objects, the museum's universalist politics, and the ways in which non-European cultures are still often exhibited through colonial perspectives.