• Professor of French and African Literature; Lois Aileen Coggins Professorship in French
  • 864.294.3175
  • Furman Hall 235Y
  • cherie.maiden@furman.edu

Dr. Cherie Maiden is originally from Saint Louis, Missouri. In 1983, she came to Furman where she has been able to pursue her two lifelong passions: France and Africa. Her teaching and research interests include French language, literature and culture; 20th and 21st Century African writers, African women writers, and the emergent Afro-French community in France. She has extensive experience abroad as a result of her Ph.D. research in Senegal, 2005 sabbatical research in Kenya; papers presented at the African Literature Association conferences held in Senegal, Martinique, Ghana and Ontario, Canada; summer 2013 interviews with Cameroonian writer Léonora Miano in Paris; numerous opportunities to serve as director and co-director of the Versailles study away program; and short stays in Tunisia, Burkina Faso, Mali, and Nigeria. She also has attended two major international conferences featuring awardin g winning and lesser known writers, scholars, and artists from around the world: France Noire – Black France: The History, Poetics and Politics of Blackness, Paris, France, summer 2008; Yari Yari Pamberi: Black Women Writers Dissecting Globalization: International Conference on Literature by Women of African Ancestry, New York University, fall 2004.

Name Title Description


Elementary French I

Introduction to the sound system and grammatical structure necessary to develop listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills in French. An appreciation of French-speaking culture underlies the orientation of the course.


Intensive Elementary French

Designed to prepare students with some background in French for the first intermediate level course. One semester equivalent of the elementary sequence.


Elementary French II

Continuation of the skills (speaking, listening, reading, writing) developed in French 111, with increased emphasis on vocabulary expansion, idiomatic expression, and cultural differences. 4 credits.


Intermediate French I

Continuation of the development of proficiency in listening and speaking, while expanding the reading and writing skills using materials of a literary or cultural nature.


French Conversation

Intense oral practice focusing on practical daily use as well as discourse on Francophone cultures and events with an emphasis on current, everyday speech. A variety of sources are used to develop listening and communication skills; improve fluency in speaking French; build vocabulary; and familiarize students with appropriate linguistic register. An introduction to French phonetics is included.


French Composition

Development of advanced writing skills in French with emphasis on advanced grammar structures, organization, idiomatic expressions, vocabulary building, and rhetorical strategies. A variety of sources are used to refine the ability to write in different genres for different occasions.


African Novel in French

The major African authors writing in French. Attention given to the early relevance of negritude, colonial and postcolonial issues, the emergence of African women writers in French, and contemporary perspectives in recent works. Emphasis on the literary representation of tradition, society and culture in the francophone African fiction.


African Literature

The development of African Literature from the early 1900s to the present. Focus on the representation of society, culture and peoples of African ancestry, the tumultuous changes resulting from colonial and neocolonial influences, the question of language vis-195 -vis African creative writing, and the emergence of national and transnational identities. Authors include: Achebe, Mariama Ba, Emecheta, Bessie Head, Ngugi, Oyono, Sembene, and newly established writers.

Dr. Maiden views teaching as a means to encourage and affirm students' individual ability to learn. Opportunities to communicate with native speakers, to engage in conversations with writers, artists, and scholars or to participate in other comparable experiences are provided in order to complement students' acquisition of the skills and knowledge that they acquire in the classroom. Through this combined approach, she seeks to foster in students a better understanding of themselves and their relationship with other peoples and communities at home and abroad.


  • "Xala", Masterplot Twentieth Annivervary Revised Edition, Salem Press, November 1996
  • Contemporary Images of the African Woman in African Fiction" Postscript: Publication of the Philological Association of the Carolinas, No. 9, 1992
  • "African Drama", Critical Survey of Drama: Foreign Language Series. Pasadena: Salem Press, 1986.

Editorials written for the GREENVILLE NEWS:

  • "Back to school inspires optimism", August 25, 1998
  • "Radcliff's death raises questions of prison inmates' human rights", July 10, 1998
  • "Greenville's Child Watch offers hope to South Carolina children", May 28, 1998
  • "Tutors are a valuable resource", April 11, 1998
  • "Most of the Black History Month celebrations are open to anyone", February 18, 1998
  • "Time to redefine term 'feminine", September 5, 1997

Papers Presented:

  • "Unwavering Hope: Resistance, Agency, and Activism in Léonora Miano's Contour du jour qui vient," African Literature Association Conference, March 20-24, 2013, Charleston, SC
  • "Ordinary Acts Empowering African Women" at the 2012 conference Empowering Women,Women Empowered, Lenoir-Rhyne University Graduate Center in Asheville, NC, October 11-14
  • "Education and African Women's Writings: Bridging the Imaginative Space and Real Life," the ninth biennial Associated Colleges of the South Women's and Gender Conference, University of Richmond, April 1—2, 2011
  • " Education, Gender Reform, and African Women's Writing," Oxford Roundtable: The Idea of Education in Nineteenth-Century Women's Writing, Harris Manchester College, Oxford, England, July 5 – July 10, 2009
  • "Emerging from the Shadows: African Women Today"guest speaker as part of the convocation series at Monmouth College on November 28, 2006
  • "Who Wants to be Quiet these Days? : African Women Talking," Global Partners Project East Africa Conference, Indiana University – Purdue University on April 7-9, 2006
  • "French, France, Africa, and Study Abroad: What Makes an Experience Multicultural?" Panel participant as part of On Est Ensemble/Building Bridges: A Symposium on Study Abroad in Francophone Africa, at Case Western Reserve University, October 20, 2006
  • "African Women, Advocates of Change". ACS Women's Studies Conference, Furman, March 26-27, 2004.
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri
Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri

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