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From Martha Mitchell’s Encyclopedia Brunoniana:

Modern Languages

Modern Languages were introduced at Brown as extra studies which students might pursue, sometimes at their own expense. French was first taught by David Howell, who came as a tutor in 1769 and remained until the College was closed by the Revolutionary War. Solomon Drowne 1773 recorded in his diary on December 11, 1770 that he “began to learn French of Mr. David Howel ... four Evenings in a Week, and on the following two days purchased a French grammar and a French Telemachus. After the Revolution, during which the College Edifice was occupied for some time by French troops, the President James Manning and Chancellor Stephen Hopkins addressed a letter to the King of France seeking support for the teaching of French. In the letter they wrote, “Ignorant of the French language, and separated as we were by more the mere distance of countries, we too readily imbibed the prejudices of the English ... Our wish has therefore been to procure a proper collection of the best French authors, and to establish a professorship of the French languages and history in the College.” The delivery of the letter was entrusted to Thomas Jefferson, who replied that the application was both useless and imprudent. There was renewed interest in French in 1795 when the Corporation appointed a committee to arrange for a proper master to teach the French language. There is no record of the acquisition of an additional faculty member for this purpose, but there may have been some informal instruction provided. In 1827 the Corporation appointed a committee to consider establishing a course in modern languages, and the annual catalogue for 1827-28 mentions Hebrew or French as optional studies in the third term of the senior year. The 1836-37 catalog announced that “Instruction in French, German and Hebrew is also furnished to those who desire it, at the expense of the student.” The instruction in German was short-lived and not mentioned again for several years. A change occurred in 1842-43, when “By recent statute of the Corporation, regular instruction in the principal languages of modern Europe is furnished to the students at a moderate additional expense, in accordance with such arrangements as the Faculty may adopt. Professor Struvé: has been appointed instructor in French, German, Italian and Spanish, and for the present year, will give instruction in these languages to the Senior and Junior classes.” The catalogue description for the next three years was similar, except that Professor Struvé had been replaced, and “Professor Jewett, who has been appointed to the charge of this department, is now in Europe. During his absence suitable persons are engaged as Instructors in the modern languages.” Charles Coffin Jewett 1835 was professor of modern languages until 1848. Upon his return from Europe, French was available in the sophomore and junior years, and German in the senior year. After Jewett, the professor of modern languages were George Washington Greene 1828 from 1848 to 1852, and James B. Angell 1849 from 1852 to 1860. Jewett, who was also librarian of the college, was in Europe from 1843 to 1845 buying books for the library and improving his language skills. Angell also studied in Europe in the year before he began teaching. Professor Greene had lived in Europe for twenty years prior to his appointment.

The modern languages were still not an important part of the curriculum in the 1840s. The courses are noted, but not described, in the catalogue, and grades for said courses were not included in the student’s record of standing. In 1850, when President Francis Wayland’s New System introduced new degrees, the substitution of modern languages for the ancient languages was permitted. The University catalogue for 1850-51 described the courses in French, German, Italian, and Spanish, and added, “The course in each language is intended to be critical, grounding the student thoroughly in grammatical principles and accustoming him to the same rigorous analysis which is applied to the Latin and Greek, while at the same time he is prepared for writing and speaking by the constant use of oral and written exercises. The authors read are studied as specimens of national literature, and made the subject of several lectures.” In this catalogue the course work in French, German, Italian, and Spanish was described, and a list of “Studies Attended” recorded 43 in 1st Class French, nine in Advanced French, and 28 in German. In his reports Professor Greene discussed instruction in French and German, but did not mention Italian or Spanish, although he remarked at length on the difficulty of his schedule, as he taught private students in town in addition to his college classes. William E. Jillson 1846 assisted as instructor in 1852-53. From the departure of Angell in 1860 until the arrival of Alonzo Williams the professorship of modern languages was vacant. Instruction in French was performed by a series of instructors. German was taught by a native instructor in 1861-62, then by President Barnas Sears until his retirement in 1866, after which German was added to the duties of John Larkin Lincoln, professor of Latin. When Alonzo Williams was appointed professor of modern languages in 1876, French began to be offered in the freshman year. In 1877 it was possible to start German in the junior year. Courses in Italian and Spanish were offered to seniors in 1885. By 1888 courses in French extended into the first half of the junior year, and German was offered in the last three years. In 1891 Alonzo Williams recommended that the department, which by this time included German, French, Italian, and Spanish languages and literatures, be split into two separate departments. Accordingly, Williams became the professor of Germanic languages and literatures, while Courtney Langdon became the professor of Romance languages and literatures, and the two departments existed for fifty years.

In 1941 the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures and the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures were reunited in the Division of Modern Languages. Hans Kurath was chairman of the department until 1946, when he was succeeded by Hunter Kellenberger. In the 1950s, in connection with the new I.C. (Identification and Criticism of Ideas) curriculum, courses labelled “European Literature in Translation” explored subjects such as “The Literary Treatment of the Emancipation of Women” and “Political Man.” In 1960 the Division of Modern Languages was replaced by five separate language and literature departments (French, German, Linguistics, Spanish and Italian, and Slavic languages) and a Modern Language Board consisting of the five chairmen and two coordinators. The five departments, joined in the late 1960s by Comparative Literature, also entered into cooperation with Classics and English to form the Council for Languages and Literatures. This Council was disbanded by decision of the participating chairs in 1977. The Center for Language Studies was established in 1986. to facilitate contact and cooperation among foreign language faculty across individual department boundaries. A project called “Foreign Languages across the Curriculum” involved the French, German, Portuguese, Spanish, and Russian languages with the programs in Afro-American Studies, History of Art and Architecture, International Relations, History, Latin American Studies, and Soviet Studies. The Language Resource Center in the Thomas J. Watson, Sr. Center for Information Technology provides audio and video language laboratories, conversation rooms, and facilities for receiving foreign television broadcasts.


French, which had been taught by David Howell, reappeared in the annual catalogue in 1827-28 as an optional study in the senior year, then disappeared from 1832 until the appointment of George Struvé as instructor in modern languages in 1842. While the new professor, Charles Coffin Jewett, traveled in Europe from 1843 to 1846, M. Joseph Octave Fortin instructed in French in 1843-44 and Robinson P. Dunn from 1844 to 1846. French was taught by George Washington Greene from 1848 to 1852, and by James Burrill Angell from 1852 to 1860. Alphonse Renaud was instructor from 1860 to 1863, and was succeeded by Theodore M. Hobigand, who taught from 1863 to 1872. Charles H. Gates was appointed instructor in French in 1872, and taught until 1876, at which time Hobigand returned for one year. Alonzo Williams became professor of modern languages in 1876, after spending a year of study in Europe before taking up his duties.

French had been a subject of the sophomore year until 1850, when it was placed in the freshman year of the three-year Bachelor of Arts course and the Bachelor of Philosophy course, taking the place of an ancient language. For those in the four-year degree course French remained a subject of the sophomore year until 1876, when it became a required subject of study for the first three semesters. Asa Clinton Crowell 1886 instructed in French in 1890-91, and then turned his attention to teaching German, while Courtney Langdon taught French. Albert S. Morse 1896 helped with French instruction after his graduation until 1909.

Benjamin Louis Antone Héanin ’10 A.M., a graduate of the University of Paris and the first of a series of native French instructors, taught from 1907 to 1910. At his suggestion the Cercle Fran?dais formed in 1909 to promote interest in the language and customs of France. Gilbert Chinard, who was educated at the University of Bordeaux, was instructor from 1909 to 1912, and Henri F. Micoleau, educated in Rouen, from 1912 to 1914. Three French plays were presented in 1913. Micoleau was promoted to assistant professor of Romance languages and literature in 1914. He left to join the French army and was killed in 1915. Albert E. Rand, who taught German from 1912 to 1918, became instructor in French in 1919, and assistant professor of the French languages and literatures in 1923. Horatio E. Smith came to head the Romance Languages Department in 1925, and the next summer secured slides and photographs from France to illustrate French civilization. The next year Louis Landré joined the department to teach advanced courses in French literature. His wife, Germaine Landré, taught French to women students beginning in 1927. They both left Brown in 1935. In that year Jean Bédé was engaged to teach French literature, while Franc Paul Gaston Thénaud became instructor in the French language. Bédé left in 1937, Thénaud and Rand in 1938, to be followed by the arrival of Harcourt Brown in 1937, Hunter Kellenberger in 1938, and Albert J. Salvan in 1939. Gordon Dewart joined the department in 1948, and Beverly S. Ridgely in 1950. The production of French plays began under the direction of Mrs. Harcourt Brown in 1938 with “Les Fourberies de Scapin.” In 1952 a new organization called L’Atelier was formed by Brown and Pembroke students to further interest in French drama. Its first presentation was Le Misanthrope in modern dress.

In 1969 three new faculty members were added to round out the offerings of the department, Jean Misrahi, noted scholar of the medieval period in France, Camille Bauer, a cultural anthropologist to teach French culture, and Arnold Weinstein to teach the modern French novel. In 1971 the name of the department was changed to Department of French Studies. The department offers concentrations in French civilization, French literature, and French language. Among the chairpersons of the department have been Hunter Kellenberger, Durand Echeverria, Reinhard Kuhn, Henry F. Majewski, Michael-André Bossy, Laura G. Durand, and Edward J. Ahearn.

French House, a coed dormitory for students with a special interest in French language and civilization, was opened in 1973. The building at 69 Manning Street, given to the University in 1951 by Therese Lownes Noble, had previously been used as a graduate center and as a men’s dormitory. The students who wanted a French house presented their own proposal and took part in the renovation and maintenance of the house. The language of the house was French, although there was no “French only” rule. French House was later located at 87 Prospect Street.


German appears in the course of study in 1846, as a course which could be taken in the senior year in place of Greek prose in the first term and Whately’s logic in the second. It remained a study of the senior class, and the courses first described in the annual catalogue for 1850-51 included oral and written exercises with the study of grammar in the first term, and the reading of Goethe’s Götz von Berlichingen and Schiller’s Don Carlos in the second. German was taught by the professor of modern languages, Charles Coffin Jewett, until 1848, by instructor George W. Greene from 1848 to 1852, and by Professor James B. Angell from 1852 to 1860. The next year there was a native German instructor, who did not enjoy his job. As Professor John Howard Appleton 1863 reminisced in 1904:

“When I commenced the study of German in college, the class was in charge of a native teacher: August Doering. Although his class did not seem to me to be disorderly, it apparently impressed him as such. At all events, he withdrew abruptly. With a view to carrying on the subject of German without interruption, President Sears took charge. I shall never forget the impression he made. He immediately started the class with the German text of Schiller’s Thirty Years War, and he pursued a method new then, but I believe common now. We read large quantities of the text at sight, the president, from time to time commenting on the grammar, on derivation and transliteration, and on the history of the times discussed.”
Sears continued to teach until his retirement, after which the teaching of German was taken over in 1867 by John Larkin Lincoln, who, adding this duty to his regular occupation of professor of Latin, instructed the seniors by oral exercises and the reading of selections from Schiller and Goethe, observing that “It is a great advantage that this study is pursued in the Senior year, when the students are so far matured, and also so well trained in linguistic studies, that they are able to master the language in a comparatively short time. At an earlier period in the college course the language would be found to be far more difficult of acquisition.”

In 1876 Alonzo Williams 1870 was appointed professor of modern languages. Under Williams’ supervision certain students were encouraged to do a considerable amount of German reading beyond the required work of the class. Two students were singled out in his report for 1884-85 for reading, one 1,400 and the other 5,600 pages of selected German authors. An increasing number of students began to be interested in advanced work in German, and in 1890-91 Williams reported that over thirty students had enrolled for honors work and had been assigned four times the amount of work in the regular courses for which they were expected to attain a rank of ninety per cent in order to receive honorable mention. At that time there were ten graduate students in German, and Williams arranged for a room in Sayles Hall to be set aside as a “German Seminary,” with its own library. In 1891-92 Williams was on leave studying in Germany with Professor Friedrich Zarncke. When Zarncke died the next fall, Williams hoped to purchase his library for Brown and contacted Hezekiah Conant of Pawtucket. Conant cabled that he would contribute $5,000 for the purchase of that library or the collection of another. As it turned out, the assembling of a new German library was undertaken and the six thousand volumes acquired were named the Conant German Seminar Library. In the absence of Williams, two instructors, Asa Clinton Crowell 1886 and Adrian Scott 1872, began teaching German in 1891. In 1894 Crowell became assistant professor of Germanic languages and literatures, and Scott, who had in 1893 earned the first Ph.D. in German at Brown, became associate professor of Germanic philology and Scandinavian. Scott left in 1896, and Scandinavian studies were dropped. Two more Ph.D. degrees in German were awarded in 1894, to Crowell, and to Arthur Newton Leonard 1892, who became professor of German at Bates College. In 1897 the first Ph.D. degree conferred upon a woman, was awarded to Martha Tarbell for work in German. Joannes B. E. Jonas who had earned a Ph.D. at the University of Chicago in 1899, was assistant professor of German from 1901 to 1910. Camillo von Klenze, a native of Switzerland, who had graduated from Harvard and earned a Ph.D. at the University of Marburg, was professor of Germanic languages and literatures from 1906 to 1916, when he left to teach at the College of the City of New York.

In 1903 the Women’s College formed a German Club which met at the homes of Professors von Klenze and Crowell and also at the German Seminary, the Slater Memorial Homestead, and Pembroke Hall, to read papers in German, sing German songs, and hold conversation in German. Robert McBurney Mitchell came to Brown as instructor in German in 1907 and retired as professor in 1947. A coeducational German Club was organized in 1911. In 1913 the club met at Professor Crowell’s and considered an invitation to join other colleges in the formation of an Intercollegiate Bund of German Clubs. The number of students studying German diminished in 1918. There were two professors instead of four, and the Brown Alumni Monthly reported, “Our German Department is engaged in active service for the government.” In 1923 Crowell added a course in Germany and the Rhine Valley, illustrated by lantern slides and stressing German culture. Increased interest in Scandinavian subjects encouraged Professor Crowell to introduce a course in Old Icelandic in 1929, and in the next year a course in early Scandinavian literature, which was read in English.

In 1923 Alfred Herrmann, who was born in Baden, Germany, and educated at Columbia, began teaching at Brown. He retired as associate professor in 1952. Edwin M. J. Kretzmann taught from 1932 to 1948. Hans Kurath was professor of Germanic languages and literature from 1932 to 1941. In 1960 W. Freeman Twaddell was named chairman of the separate German Department which reemerged from the Department of Modern Languages. Old Icelandic was reintroduced in 1970, and a course in Swedish began in 1975. When the language requirement was eliminated during the curricular change of 1970, only 32 of the ninety students in German 3 elected to take the no longer required fourth semester of the language. A few years later enrollments rose again as a result of a growing interest in language proficiency for personal benefit, and in 1975 Edward F. Greene, chemistry professor, and Jonathan Conant, professor of German, collaborated in arranging a joint concentration in their two subjects in answer to a growing need for bilingual scientists.

The department offers courses in the German language, literature, and civilization and also in Swedish. In addition to concentrations in German literature and in German studies, there are options to combine German with international relations, history, comparative literature and other fields. Brown also maintains exchange programs with universities in Germany. Chairs of the German Department since Twaddell have been Detlev W. Schumann, Karl S. Weimar, William C. Crossgrove, Werner Hoffmeister, Albert Schmitt, Frederick R. Love, Robert G. Warnock, Carol Poore, and Katherine Goodman.

Hispanic languages

Spanish first appeared in the catalogue for 1850-51, but in a list of “Studies Attended,” no students of Spanish are recorded. The Spanish course was dropped in 1852, perhaps because professor of modern languages George Washington Greene removed to New York, although his reports do not say that he actually taught Spanish. In 1883-84 Spanish was offered again, when Jean C. Guilbert was engaged to instruct a class of nineteen students. Gulielmo D’Arcais was appointed instructor in both Spanish and Italian in 1885. He resigned because of ill health in 1889 and was replaced by Andrew McCorrie Warren. Courtney Langdon was appointed assistant professor of modern languages in 1890 with responsibility for Italian and Spanish. In 1892 Langdon was joined by Albert B. Johnson 1891, who began to teach the introductory Spanish course, while Langdon taught the Classical Spanish literature course. In 1899 Johnson became assistant professor and assumed the responsibility for the Spanish courses. He taught courses in Modern Spanish (which was designed to provide students quickly with the ability to read modern authors), Spanish literature of the nineteenth century (which required reports in Spanish on outside reading), and the Spanish classics. In 1916-17 Eugene E. Vann of Stanford University, who had taught in Brazil, was appointed for one year as lecturer in Romance Languages and Latin-American History, to teach courses in both Spanish and Portuguese and one on Latin-American history, “covering all the southern republics, and laying special emphasis on economic conditions in South America, trading routes, commercial opportunities, etc.” A Spanish club formed in 1920 adopted the name, “Club Cervantes.” Johnson taught until 1934, aided by assistant professor Gaetano Cavicchia from 1921 to 1927, and instructors Antonio J. Rubio from 1921 to 1928 and Graydon S. DeLand from 1925 to 1929. New additions to the Spanish curriculum were “Contemporary Spanish Literature” in 1927, and in 1928 “Practical Spanish ... based on the literature, culture, customs, and current events in Spanish-speaking countries,” and a course on Lope de Vega conducted in Spanish by William L. Fichter, who arrived as associate professor of the Spanish language and literature in that year and remained until 1962. Jaime Homero Arjona, a graduate student, assisted with Spanish instruction from 1928 to 1930. The first Ph.D. degree in Spanish at Brown was received by Arjona, whose dissertation was a critical edition of Lope de Vega’s Las Bizarrias de Belisa.

In 1943 Juan López-Morillas, a native of Jaen, Spain, and holder of a bachelor’s degree and a licenciate of law degree from the University of Madrid, and a Ph.D. degree in romance languages and comparative literature from the University of Iowa, came to Brown as assistant professor of Spanish. Ruth Horne Kossoff, the first woman to earn a Ph.D. degree in Spanish at Brown in 1946, was an instructor in 1943-44 and then taught from 1946 until 1960 as instructor, assistant professor, and lecturer. The Spanish faculty grew with the arrival of A. David Kossoff and Alan Trueblood in 1947, José Amor y Vázquez in 1950, and Frank Durand in 1960.

In 1960 the Division of Modern Languages was reorganized into five separate departments and López-Morillas became chairman of the combined Department of Spanish and Italian. In 1969 the department was renamed Department of Hispanic and Italian Studies after a Portuguese language course was introduced in 1968. In 1969 a second Portuguese course was added. Two visiting professors were imported, Franco Fido from U.C.L.A. to assist the department in planning further expansion in studies in Italian culture and Cyril A. Jones of Trinity College, Oxford, whose appointment was shared with the Department of Comparative Literature. When López-Morillas retired in 1978, at which time he was described as “perhaps the world’s preeminent Spanish intellectual historian,” he was succeeded by Geoffrey W. Ribbans, from the faculty of the University of Liverpool. Ribbans offered Brown’s first course in the Catalan language and culture. Antonio Carreā€“o, whose field is the Golden Age, joined the department in 1985, when Alan Trueblood retired. Julio Ortega came in 1989 to teach Latin-American literature, and Mercedes Vaquerro in 1992 to teach Medieval literature. Stephanie Merrim, who specializes in Latin-American literature and came in 1980, was the first woman to receive tenure in the Hispanic Studies Department. Brown was host to the Eighth Congress of the Asociación Internacional de Hispanistas in August 1983 and to the 28th Congress of the Instituto Internacional de Literatura Iberoamericana in 1990.


Italian appeared in the curriculum in 1842-43 under instructor George P. Struvé. George Washington Greene may have taught Italian, which was announced in the annual catalogue in the 1840s, but there is no mention of Italian in his reports or in the grade reports of students for that period. In 1885 Gulielmo D’Arcais was appointed instructor of Spanish and Italian, which he taught until 1889. At that time the teaching of Italian was assigned to Alonzo Williams, who was in Europe at the time and availed himself of a vacation in Italy to prepare for his duties. In 1890 Courtney Langdon came to Brown as assistant professor of modern languages and took over the instruction in Italian and Spanish. Langdon and his followers won the esteem of the Italian community, and the best description of the history of the department comes from a statement of local residents of Italian descent on March 14, 1929, as they prepared to raise money for Italian books.

“Every resident of Italian birth or ancestry in Rhode Island sincerely appreciates the attitude which Brown University has assumed in the development of its Department of Italian Language and Literature. Not only has it committed itself to the teaching of that language, but it has always provided distinguished professors to interpret the contribution which Italian literature has made to the culture of the civilized world.

“This particular department at Brown may be characterized as the ‘favorite child’ of that scholar whose name is a source of pride to every Rhode Islander, the late Professor Courtney Langdon. He it was who first gave life to the teaching at our local university of the literature of a people that he loved. Through him the youth of our city became interested in a literature which hitherto had been resorted to by a restricted number of advanced students. His sincere appreciation of the Italian people, which he carried to his grave, resulted in ties of devoted friendship. This esteem which he created for himself he left as a legacy to the university which honored itself by honoring him. Upon the death of Professor Langdon, Brown University was confronted with the difficult problem of selecting a successor. It chose carefully and well when it brought to Brown Professor Horatio E. Smith as head of the Department of Romance Languages. His learning and executive ability have nursed Professor Langdon’s ‘favorite child’ into sturdy manhood.

“Professor Gaetano Cavicchia was next selected as Professor of Italian. Until he resigned to take charge of the Romance Department at the Rhode Island College of Education, Professor Cavicchia devoted his undivided efforts in serving this university and in cementing the ties of good-will which Professor Langdon had fostered. He was, in turn, followed by Professor Rudolph Altrocchi, who, after one year’s service, resigned, to the regret of all who knew him, to accept an invitation from the University of California.

“The chair of Italian Language and Literature is now held by Professor Alfonso deSalvio, a recognized scholar and teacher of distinction in his chosen field. A graduate of Harvard University in the class of 1902, and the holder of the degree of Doctor of Philosophy from that same institution, Professor DeSalvio come to Brown after having served Northwestern University for 24 years. His ability as a writer, commentator, editor and teacher is unquestioned. Brown is to be congratulated for bringing to us as its Professor of Italian, a distinguished student, full of human qualities, who has already made his influence felt in our community.

“The progress in the development of the Italian department at Brown is, however, ultimately traceable to its beloved President, William H. P. Faunce. He needs no praise from anyone. The present generation loves him; posterity will hold his memory in grateful remembrance.

“As a tribute for what Brown University has done in disseminating just recognition of the literature of Italy in America, and more especially as a token of gratitude to President Faunce upon his retiring as the active head of that institution, the citizens of Rhode Island of Italian ancestry have decided to show their appreciation in a substantial way. Gratitude expressed in words is beautiful, but when it is expressed by deeds it is sublime.

“With this object in view, our boys of Italian descent, whether former students of Brown University or not, have started a movement to collect the sum of $10,000 from the citizens of Rhode Island of Italian birth or origin and donate this sum to Brown University. This amount is to be used by Brown for the sole purpose of increasing the facilities of the Italian library at that institution.”

This gift was formally completed on January 12, 1932, when a plaque bearing an engraving of Faunce on one side and silhouettes of the First Baptist Church and the Van Wickle Gates on the other was presented along with a commemorative book. The book bound in Florentine leather was provided by Emilio N. Capelli, president of the fund committee, and contained excerpts from Italian literature on pages alternating with lists of the subscribers, with designs of the Italian Renaissance drawn by Aristide B. Cianfarani, who was also the sculptor of the plaque.

Cavicchia was assistant professor of Romance languages and literature from 1921 to 1927. Horatio Smith taught Romance languages from 1925 to 1931, when he changed to the teaching of French. Altrocchi was professor of Italian language and literature in 1927-28, DeSalvio taught from 1928 to 1938, with the assistance of Arthur L. Washburn, as a lecturer from 1930 to 1935. Archibald T. MacAlister was assistant professor of Italian from 1938 to 1940, as was Renato Pogglioli from 1941 to 1945. Two professors of Italian came in 1946, Lewis H. Gordon, who taught until 1970, and Walter J. Schnerr, who taught until 1980, and has more recently taught University courses. In 1960 Italian became part of the Department of Spanish and Italian, later the Department of Hispanic and Italian Studies. A separate Department of Italian Studies began in 1989 with Professor Franco Fido as chair. He was succeeded by Professor Anthony J. Oldcorn.

Portuguese and Brazilian Studies

The Center for Portuguese and Brazilian Studies, established in 1976 as an interdisciplinary center for the study of the language, culture, and history of Portuguese-speaking people, brought together a group of faculty members, George Monteiro of the English Department, Anani Dzidzienyo of Afro-American Studies, Adeline Becker from Anthropology and Robert Padden from History. Nelson Vieira, who had joined the faculty in 1969 as assistant professor of Portuguese and director of the Portuguese-English Bilingual Project operated in Fox Point jointly by Brown and the Providence School Department, became director of the Center. In the intensive Portuguese I course, in which students spent ten hours a week learning the language, they also learned about the Portuguese people and their culture. In the beginning the Center had a connection with the Fox Point project, the first Portuguese-language teaching project in the country. The Center also became a community resource for Portuguese immigrants in the Fox Point section of the city south of the campus. In 1980 a new journal was founded by Rogiero Silva, an artist working at the Center’s Bilingual Institute. The editors of Gávea-Brown: A Bilingual Journal of Portuguese-American Letters and Studies (“Gávea” means “seagull”) were Onesimo Almeida, lecturer in Portuguese studies, and George Monteiro. Almeida also directs a press called Gávea-Brown Publications, which has published more than fifteen books on Portuguese and Portuguese-American literature and studies. The programs of the Center focus on Portugal, Brazil, Luso-phone Africa, Cape Verde, and Luso-America, and include study abroad at the Federal University of Bahia, Brazil and at the Universities of Lisbon and Coimbra. In 1984 the Center formed the New England Association of Brazilianists to promote the study of Brazil. Connected to the Center is the New England Multifunctional Resource Center for Language and Culture in Education, which provides training to assist educators with bilingual and English as a Second Language school programs. The Center, which offers a master’s degree in Brazilian studies and also in Portuguese bilingual education and cross-cultural studies and a Ph.D. in Luso-Brazilian studies, received department status in 1992 with Professor Almeida as chairman.

Slavic Languages

Slavic Languages, once part of the Division of Modern Languages, became a separate department in 1960. During World War II courses in Russian language and literature were offered by Robert P. Casey, professor of Biblical literature. Brown’s first professor of Russian was Edward J. Brown, who had begun his Russian studies during World War II at Cornell in the Army Specialized Training Program and earned a master’s degree in Slavic languages at the University of Chicago in 1946. In 1947 he was appointed instructor in Russian at Brown. He received his Ph.D. degree from Columbia in 1950, and was promoted to assistant professor at that time, associate professor in 1953, and professor in 1955. In 1956 an honors program in Russian studies was offered jointly by the Department of Modern Languages and the Department of Political Science, under the direction of Professor Brown and Allen McConnell ’44. Henry Kucera came in 1955 to teach Russian for a year as a replacement for Brown and remained to teach Russian and German for two years after Brown’s return. In 1958, as enrollments increased greatly after the Soviet Union put its first Sputnik into space, the services of both professors were needed for Russian, and local Russian-speaking people were recruited to help with the conversation classes. Edward Brown was named chairman of the newly created Department of Slavic Languages in 1960. He left Brown in 1965 to teach at Indiana University and later at Stanford, and was succeeded as chairman by Kucera. Other chairpersons of the department have been Thomas Winner, Victor Terras, Sam Driver, Robert Mathiesen, and Patricia Arant. The curriculum expanded in the 1960s to include more courses in Russian literature and studies in Slavic culture and linguistics and in modern Czech literature. Courses offered by the department in the 1970s included Serbo-Croatian, Bulgarian, Polish, Church Slavonic, and semiotics. Brown has awarded graduate degrees in Russian since the mid-1960s, and has also awarded the largest number of Ph.D. degrees in Czech languages and literature in the country.

Oriental Languages

Oriental languages were first introduced in the Department of Linguistics, Chinese in 1962, Japanese in 1979, and Hindi in 1983. Instruction in Korean began in 1987. Since 1987 the oriental languages have been taught by the Department of East Asian Studies.

The above entry appears in Encyclopedia Brunoniana by Martha Mitchell, copyright ©1993 by the Brown University Library. It is used here by permission of the author and the University and may not be copied or further distributed without permission.

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