University of Central Oklahoma STUDENTS: Attend ten events and become eligible to enter the drawing for a $500 tuition waiver. If you enter, your passport must be turned in by Thursday, December 1, 2011.

The Passport to France tuition waiver drawing will be held on MONDAY, DECEMBER 5 in the Virginia Lamb Room of the HES building at 4 p.m. Please join us!

You can view the list of events in calendar format, without descriptions, if you prefer.

Unless otherwise specified below, Passport to France events are free of charge and do not require advance registration

Are you interested in studying abroad?

UCO faculty are offering both domestic and international study tours related to France over Spring Break this year!

Domestic: Field Geography - Landscapes of French Louisiana. Dr. Michelle Brym and Dr. Douglas Hurt, department of History and Geography. More information

International: Paris - Culture and Commerce. Dr. Saba Bahouth, College of Business Administration. More information

International: Faces of France. Dr. Catherine Webster, College of Liberal Arts. More information

August 30, COM 120 (Communications building) 7:30 p.m.: Ten Things to See in France Before You Die. Pamela Washington, Dean of UCO's College of Liberal Arts, shares insights and photographs of iconic--or simply very interesting--sights from her recent trips to France.

September 7, Pegasus Theater, (Lib Arts building) 7:00 p.m.: Documentary: The Tour, Baby! For most of his adult life, Scott Coady had a long distance love affair with the Tour de France. In 1999 he resolved himself to get as close to his beloved Tour as possible. Figuring others may not have the chance to visit the fabled century old race, he brought a handheld video camera along and recorded his attempts to embrace his crush, risking rejection and humiliation. In response to his passion and sincerity, the Tour loved him back and welcomed him into its inner world. Come along for the ride as Scott Coady takes you on the adventure of a life time way behind the scenes and deep inside the Tour de France baby! Visit the film's official website.

September 8, CTL 106 (Center for Transformative Learning) 3:30 p.m.: The Relevance of French Existentialism to the Economic Crisis: An Absurd Monody. One of the most famous fruits of modern French philosophy is the concept of Existentialism, an idea that quickly spread to the American intelligentsia when popularized by Jean-Paul Sartre in the mid-20th century. But how does this esoteric idea relate to our 21st-century world? Sarah Woolwine, adjunct professor of Philosophy, will relate the concept of absurdity central to French existentialism to an American idea of absurdity that was developed by the writer, Paul Goodman, in the 1960's. She will then use this connection as a basis for discussing the current economic crisis as it relates to American college students.

September 13, Radke Recital Hall, (Center for Transformative Learning) 5:30 p.m.: Documentary: Lafayette: The Lost Hero. This film chronicles the many contributions of French citizen Gilbert de Lafayette to the development of democracy in the United States and his controversial legacy. The screening will be followed by a brief discussion and question-and-answer session. The event is sponsored by Passport UCO, the American Democracy Project, Phi Alpha Theta, the Geography Student Organization, and the Pat Beard Society.

September 14, Troy Smith Auditorium (Business building) 2:00 p.m.: A French Corporation in the United States. Executives from the venerable Michelin Corporation, one of the most familiar and successful Franco-American businesses in the United States and the world today, will discuss the role of a French-based organization in the USA and how its European roots affect its business practices.

September 21, LIB 108 (Chambers Library), 1:00 p.m.: Jesse Miller, a professor of photography from of UCO's Mass Communication department, will lead a workshop in which participants can make their own cyanotypes, a process developed in England but popularized in 19th-century France by the artist Henri Le Secq (Lauren Redniss's book, Radioactive--see November 3--was printed using the cyanotype process). Dress casually!

September 22, EDU 115 (Education building auditorium) 12:30 p.m.: Everything you ever wanted to know about the French Education system (but were afraid to ask). In France, public education starts at age three and continues right through University. Because the curriculum is highly centralized, students in all parts of the country follow a similar curriculum and prepare for terminal exams that determine, in large part, their future careers. Join Dr. Janette Wetsel from the College of Education, Dr. Catherine Webster from the College of Liberal Arts, and French and American students for an overview of this highly regarded and highly successful system.

September 22, Radke Recital Hall (Transformative Learning Center) 7:30 p.m.: No Exit. This short, one-act play by French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre, presented here in a reader's theater format with minimal props and sets and directed by James Dolph of UCO's English department, is considered the clearest example of the existentialist philosophy. As a follow-up to the lecture on September 8, or as a lead-in to the upcoming drama performance, or simply as a stand-alone event, this will be an engaging introduction to one of France's most famous works of literature.

September 23, LAR 139 (Liberal Arts building) noon-5:00 p.m. (come and go). Video game marathon: Saboteur. Vive le résistance! Enjoy a hands-on session with French freedom fighters, and the UCO Chess and Games Club, as they resist Nazi occupation during World War II.

September 27, Troy Smith Auditorium (Business building) 2:00 p.m.: The French Role in the European Union Business Climate. Darrell Ford of UCO's Finance Department, a specialist in corporate law, will discuss the role of France in the formation, structure and purpose of the European Union, with its parliament headquarters in Strasbourg, France, as well as the Council of Europe, also headquartered in Strasbourg, France. He will describe the business education system in France and his interactions with faculty at Robert Schuman University School of Management. He will share insights gained from his discussions with business leaders in various industries in France, including manufacturing and banking, as well as discuss the attitudes of workers and French management teams. He will finally try to highlight some of the current issues facing France as a member of the European Union.

September 28, COM 120, 4:00 p.m.: Who was Molière, and Why Does he Make us Laugh? One of France's greatest--and funniest--dramatists and actors was Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, better known by his stage name, Molière. The son of Louis XIII's upholsterer-in-ordinary, young Jean-Baptiste grew up more interested in theater stages than in theater seats; he became one of the most important cultural figures during the reign of the famous "Sun King," Louis XIV. Guest artist Timothy Mooney, who will direct the production of Molière's most famous play on our campus next week, explains why this 17th-century playwright still makes us laugh as hard as his contemporary audience did.

September 29, COM 120, 2:00 p.m.: Daguerreotypes. Mark Zimmerman, a professor of photography from of UCO's Mass Communication department, will discuss the earliest form of commercial photography, Daguerreotypes, in a multimedia production. The process was discovered in the 1830s by French inventors Louis Daguerre and Joseph Nicéphore Niépce. Daguerreotypes and an early camera will be on display during the presentation.

October 3, LAR 217 (Liberal Arts building), 7:30 p.m.: The History of French Film. John Springer of UCO's Department of English, Director of the Film Studies program, will talk about the technological and cultural roots of one of the most important and influential film industries in the world. This event is a precursor to the French Film Festival in November, during which five first-run films from 2010 and 2011 will be screened on the UCO campus.

October 6-9, Mitchell Hall Theatre, 7:30 p.m. (Thursday through Saturday) and 2:00 p.m. (Sunday): Play, Tartuffe. Molière's satire on religious hypocrisy, arguably his most famous play, is one of the great comedies of French theatre. This elaborate, 17th-century-style production will feature live music and dancing. The play will be staged by guest director and artist-in-residence Tim Mooney. Tickets for UCO students with ID cost $4; faculty and staff tickets are $10. General admission is $14 and seniors $10.

October 10, Central Station Kitchen (Human Environmental Sciences building) 3:30 p.m.: Crepes 'n' Cream Puffs. Purchase a tasty French snack from students raising funds for the UCO French club. Passport stamps are not available for this event except for volunteer students who assist in the production of the crepes and cream puffs.

October 11, Pegasus Theater, 7:30 p.m.: Film, Molière. (121 minutes) In case you just can't get enough Molière--or you just want to show off how well you get the "in jokes"! In 2007, director Laurent Tirard speculated about what might have happened in the "missing" year of the playwright's life, during which no written record of his doings exist. Disguised as a priest named Tartuffe (most of the in-jokes are a little more subtle than that), the young Molière infiltrates a gentleman's country home to help his host win the heart of the beautiful society widow Célimène--and to avoid debtor's prison. At the estate, he witnesses a number of funny and touching events that eventually find their way into his most successful comedies. This event is a precursor to the French Film Festival in November, during which five first-run films from 2010 and 2011 will be screened on the UCO campus. View trailer.

October 12, EDU 115 2:00 p.m.: The French Higher Education System and Opportunities for Students. Joëlle E. Nisolle of La Rochelle University, one of our sister universities in France, will answer your questions about the French university system--and the possibilities for students from the U.S. to study abroad there. From Universities to "Grandes Ecoles," public or private institutions, free of charge or expensive, it is often difficult to understand the structure of the French higher education system and its recent adaptations to conform to the European Bologna process. A simplified overview will be offered, stressing the opportunities available to American students for attending French institutions through free bilateral cooperation programs.

October 13, Virginia Lamb Room (Human Environmental Sciences building) 12:30 p.m.: A French Kiss behind a French Door: an American Fantasy or a Cultural Misunderstanding? Joëlle E. Nisolle returns to explain some of the differences between French and American perceptions. Through this lecture, some of the French-American most frequent cultural misunderstandings will be debunked and demystified by identifying some of the most striking differences in the two countries' cultural traits.

October 17, Radke Recital Hall (Center for Transformative Learning) 3:30 p.m.: Concert with Kyle Dillingham. Come enjoy the beautiful sounds of the French language as UCO ambassador-in-residence, Kyle Dillingham, shares his passion and love of French culture through music. Kyle will carry you on the strings of his violin through the streets of Paris. Be washed in the language of love! More information about Kyle Dillingham.

October 18, Pegasus Theater 7:00 p.m.: The Crowned Jacobin: Napoleon and the French Revolution. Historians argue about Napoleon Bonaparte's relationship to the French Revolution. While some historians maintain he ended it, Jeff Plaks of UCO's Department of History and Geography will argue that Napoleon preserved the greatest legacy of 1789 and spread it throughout Europe.

October 24, Central Station Kitchen 2:00 p.m.: French cooking demonstration. Do you have what it takes to be a French chef? Find out more about what just might be the most famous cuisine in the world, and learn how to make some distinctively French dishes.

October 27, Radke Recital Hall 7:30 p.m.: Nuit D'Ètoiles: An Evening of French Song. Love vocal music? Here's a concert just for you, featuring classic French melodie and cabaret songs. Sarah Henderson and Myles Simpson, graduate students in the School of Music, will provide background information during the performance, which will involve thirty singers and live music.

November 1, HH 201 (Howell Hall auditorium) 4:00 p.m. The Three R's of French Nuclear Power: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. More than 75% of France's power is supplied by nuclear energy--the highest percentage in the world. The EDF (Électricité de France) produces most of its electrical power from nuclear energy, meeting the demand of France and other European nations. Evan Lemley of UCO's Department of Engineering and Physics will focus on the past, present, and future of nuclear energy in France and other major nuclear power producers in the world. This presentation is part of Passport to France's salute to the International Year of Chemistry (more information). Note: Dr. Lemley has made his PowerPoint slides for the presentation available here.

November 1, Pegasus Theater 7:30 p.m. Film: L'Illusionniste. (82 minutes) Sylvain Chomet’s delightful follow-up to 2003’s The Triplets of Belleville is another exquisitely animated film, one based on an unproduced script by the French comic genius Jacques Tati (which was given to Chomet by Tati’s own daughter). L'Illusionniste is set in the early 1960s, the time when Tati wrote the screenplay after his huge success with Mon Oncle (1958). As an homage to the source material, Chomet’s title character is the spitting image of Tati. This middle-aged, slightly stoop-shouldered magician is upstaged by his rabbit during performances in Paris; at his shows in London, the Illusionist can’t begin to compete with a wildly popular proto-Beatles band. But he finds far more appreciative audiences in small pubs in Scotland--and makes a devoted teenage friend, Alice, a poor cleaning girl who follows him to Edinburgh. The two form a touching father-daughter bond, with the Illusionist determined to secretly provide Alice with the nice clothes she so admires--finery that isn’t procured through magic, but through a series of funny odd jobs that the conjurer takes. Though neither the magician nor his young charge speak each other’s language, L'Illusionniste, like Tati’s work, beautifully shows the ways people understand each other nonverbally. View trailer.

November 2, Broncho Lake 3:00 p.m. Tour de Central bicycle race. the Tour de Central invites UCO students, faculty, staff, and alumni to compete, in teams of four riders, in a series of relay bicycle races on Bum-a-Bikes provided by the university. Inspired by the Tour de France and the Little 500 at Indiana University, the Tour de Central offers athletic and logistical challenges as the teams compete to win the coveted yellow jerseys, or maillots jaune, that will be awarded to each team in each category (students, faculty, staff, and alumni). Primes, awards that go to the winners of certain laps around the course, door prizes, and raffle items will also be awarded during the event. The entry fee is $5 per rider, or $20 per team, and all profits from the event will go to Doctors Without Borders, a non-profit humanitarian aid organization started in France in 1971. The closed course will circle the Business and Communications Buildings on the wide sidewalks there, and the start/finish and exchange area will be just north of Broncho Lake. The event will last approximately one hour. Registration forms are available here and at the Cycology bike maintenance shop on the southeast corner of Murdaugh Hall.

November 3, Constitution Hall (Nigh University Center), high noon: UCO's Fashion Marketing and Global Diversity and Protocol students will present Pour l'Amour de la Mode ("For the Love of Fashion"), a French-themed fashion show. Ooh la la!

November 3, Forensic Science Institute auditorium 4:00 p.m.: Radioactive author presentation and book signing. Lauren Redniss, author of the critically acclaimed and visually stunning graphic-format biography Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie: A Tale of Love and Fallout, will speak about her work and the subjects who populate it. This presentation is co-sponsored by UCO's Friends of the Library program. In October, Radioactive was named a finalist for the National Book Foundation’s 2011 National Book Award, the first graphic-format book ever to be nominated in the nonfiction category.

November 8, Pegasus Theater 7:30 p.m. Film: Inspector Bellamy. (110 minutes) This final film of Claude Chabrol, one of the architects of the French New Wave who died in September 2010 at age 80, features another Gallic legend: Gérard Depardieu, playing the Parisian celebrity detective of the title, a role Chabrol wrote expressly for the actor. On vacation with his wife and near retirement, Bellamy now approaches crime-solving as more of a hobby, though he is still haunted by a childhood incident with his obnoxious younger brother, Jacques, who comes to visit. More mysteries come to the fore--involving an unidentified body in a car wreck, an insurance scam, and a treacherous mistress--in this droll policier by the man once referred to as the “French Hitchcock.” Though he’s in no rush, Bellamy is still determined to find the answers, perhaps even to unravel the root of his lifelong fraternal torment. “I found a kind of dignity in despising myself,” Bellamy explains to his devoted spouse--and Depardieu similarly brings his own ruffled dignity to the film, artfully moving his formidable bulk from scene to scene. View trailer.

November 9, Pegasus Theater 3:30 p.m.: "Eleanor of Aquitaine: The Throne in England but the Heart in France." She was confined for more than 25 years and still managed to change West Europe in a way no other women in Medieval History could. Her marriage decisions were the origin of hundreds of years of war. Her chess board included six kings instead of two and she played all six of them like no other master could. The present map of Europe would have been different but an unexpected event spoiled her plan. Yet, she was the symbol of romantic love: Troubadour singing was born in her palace and Courtly Love grew in her backyard. Saba Bahouth, College of Business Administration, will discuss the history and legacy of this fascinating figure. This presentation is co-sponsored by the UCO Medieval Society. Download a flyer.

November 15, Pegasus Theater 7:30 p.m. Film: Un Prophète. (150 minutes) Malik, the 19-year-old French-Arab criminal vividly portrayed by Tahar Rahim enters prison as an uneducated naïf. But by the time he leaves jail, he will know how to read--and how to kill. Jacques Audiard’s intricate study of the bloody rules and rituals behind bars never once glorifies the shocking violence that becomes a rite of passage for Malik, who, friendless, feels he must do the savage bidding of a ferocious Corsican crime boss in exchange for protection. Instead, the director (sometimes referred to as the “French Scorsese”) examines prison as its own specific social system, its corruption, cronyism, and racism a reflection of France at large. As Malik begins to defy the Corsican overlord and make decisions of his own, he becomes drawn to another Muslim inmate who teaches him how to read and write. For as much as we cheer Malik’s small victories on his slow road to redemption, he remains a deliberately ambiguous hero--one who will always have copious blood on his hands. View trailer.

November 21, Pegasus Theater 7:30 p.m. Film: Potiche. (103 minutes) Please note that this date falls on a Monday, while all the other films in the series will be screened on Tuesdays. Set in 1977 in a provincial French town, Potiche stars Catherine Deneuve as Suzanne Pujol, a submissive, housebound "trophy housewife" (or "potiche") who steps in to manage the umbrella factory run by her wealthy and tyrannical husband (Fabrice Luchini) after the works go on strike and take him hostage. To everyone's surprise, Suzanne proves herself a competent and assertive woman of action. But when her husband returns in top form, things get complicated. Gérard Depardieu plays a former union leader and Suzanne's ex-beau--now the region's Mayor and Member of Parliament--who still holds a flame for her. A satirical and hilarious take on the war between the sexes and classes. View trailer.

Off-campus extra, Friday & Saturday, November 25 – 26, 5:30 p.m. & 8 p.m. and Sunday, November 27, 2 p.m. at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art

Film: The Hedgehog. The Hedgehog is the story of Paloma, a young girl bent on ending it all on her upcoming twelfth birthday. Using her father's old camcorder to chronicle the hypocrisy she sees in adults, Paloma begins to learn about life from the grumpy building concierge, Renée Michel. When Paloma’s camera reveals the extensive secret library in Renée's back room, and that the often gruff matron reads Tolstoy to her cat, Paloma begins to understand that there are allies to be found beneath the prickliest of exteriors. As the unlikely friendship deepens, Paloma’s own coming of age becomes a much less pessimistic prospect.

Click here for more information and a preview trailer.

The Oklahoma City Museum of Art is located at 415 Couch Drive, Oklahoma City, OK 73102. Phone: (405) 236-3100

Student admission (with I.D.) is $6. We will not be on hand with passports and stamps, but if you attend this film just hang onto your ticket stub and staple it into your passport when you get one.

November 29, Pegasus Theater 7:30 p.m. Film: La belle endormie. (82 minutes) As she did in 2009’s Bluebeard, Catherine Breillat--cinema’s most consistently intelligent investigator of female sexuality--has provocatively deconstructed another classic children’s tale by Charles Perrault, upending conventional ideas about sex and gender. An infant girl is cursed to die at a tender age by a wicked witch; three good fairies recast the spell so that our heroine, Anastasia, will sleep for 100 years when she turns six, waking up as a beautiful teenager. In her prolonged slumber, the stalwart child declares her hatred for “the world of little girls” and their fondness for princess-y things, much preferring to get lost in her dictionary and the universe of new words. Her vivid dreamscape also includes adventures in a remote forest, where she is taken in by a widow and her teenage son, Peter; after further encounters with dwarves and albino monarchs, Anastasia finds a kindred spirit in a Gypsy girl. At last waking up from her century-long sleep, 16-year-old Anastasia discovers carnal pleasures with both a man and a woman--as well as crushing heartbreak. Please note: Despite the fairy-tale theme, this film is not suitable for children. View trailer.

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