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The Portuguese Language Program

Due to the intensive nature of Portuguese language instruction offered by the Department of Portuguese and Brazilian Studies and to the opportunities for study in Brazil and in Portugal, it is possible for students to start Portuguese at Brown and still be able to become concentrators. In fact, most recent Portuguese and Brazilian Studies concentrators began studying Portuguese as freshmen or sophomores.

The importance attached to the Portuguese language program by the Department of Portuguese and Brazilian Studies is dramatized by the active involvement of faculty members of all ranks. Unlike other language programs at Brown, even basic Portuguese language courses are taught primarily by regular faculty. For a number of years Portuguese 110 (Intensive Portuguese), was taught by Professors Nelson H. Vieira and Luiz F. Valente, both of whom are literature scholars, with the assistance of a graduate teaching fellow. In the fall of 2002 Professor Patricia Sobral assumed responsibility for the coordination of the Portuguese language program. Professor Leonor Simas-Almeida is currently in charge of Portuguese 1030, an advanced course in Portuguese composition.

Attention is also paid to the development of Portuguese language skills in most of the content-based courses offered by the Department. For example, Portuguese 610, 620 and 710 are designed to strengthen speaking and formal writing skills while introducing students to the literature and culture of Brazil and Portugal. Opportunities for students to use Portuguese are not limited, however, to literature courses. Portuguese 1800, an interdisciplinary seminar primarily for concentrators but open to non-concentrators and graduate students, is conducted in Portuguese. Portuguese 1070 focuses on the media and Portuguese 1080 focuses on perfomance, using ground-breaking ArtsLiteracy methodology. In addition, Professor Anani Dzidzienyo, a specialist in Afro-Brazilian Studies, has taught special sections of their courses on Brazil for students who are fluent in Portuguese, as part of Brown's Language Across the Curriculum Program. Professor James Green, a specialist in Brazilian History, strongly encourages his students to make use of sources written in Portuguese.