08 December 2016
The French Language and Literature Department at the Faculty of Human Sciences at Beirut Arab University , in collaboration with the Swiss Embassy in Lebanon, the French Institute and the Francophone University Agency, organised a conference under the title of “A Modern Vision of Culture in the Contemporary Society”.
The Conference which was held in Beirut Campus was attended by the President of BAU Prof. Amr Galal El Adawi, Secretary General Dr. Omar Houri, faculty deans and members, BAU students as well as students and French instructors from the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik and the Islamic University.
The conference was also attended by the Swiss Ambassador to Lebanon Mr. Francois Barras, Cultural Attaché in Swiss Embassy in Lebanon Mr. Michel Abou Khalil, French Institute Attaché for the French Language in Lebanon Dr. Mathew Weeger, Regional Director of the Middle East Office for the Francophone University Agency Dr. Hervey Saboran represented by Mrs. Mirald Khalaf, and the Secretary General of the UNESCO Lebanese National Committee Professor Zahida Darwish.
After the Lebanese and BAU anthems, a Documentary Film of BAU was showed. Dr Soufi Salloum, the Conference Presenter, noted that this conference shall strengthen the cooperation between BAU, the Swiss Embassy, the French Institute and the Francophone University Agency.
The Conference Coordinator and Head of the French Language and Literature Department at BAU Professor Nadia Iskandarani warned against the drifts that may occur due to the existence of problems related to the cultural and human identity, enumerating the conference topics that deal with modernity and culture issues.
For Dr. Weeger, the conference title sheds the light on reality and strongly reinforces the links between writers and readers, adding that contemporary subjects provide documentary material to the Francophone world and reflect a modern vision far from the classic one.
Mrs. Khalaf talked about the links between culture and society, saying that the conference provides intellectual wealth that promotes scientific and cultural climates based on the fact that French is used in teaching and research.
Dean of the Faculty of Human Sciences Professor El Nayal called for the promotion of all aspects of culture in the light of globalization and current changes, noting that culture represents the identity of the community.
In his speech, President El Adawi’s requested to recognize cultural diversity and to focus on culture and its role in reflecting the image of the contemporary society, stressing the fact that culture joins us.
The Swiss Ambassador Mr. Francois Baras addressed the relationship between culture and diplomacy, referring to the possibility of strengthening this relation through the establishment of international events, conducting research as cultural and knowledge sources and sharing values despite the changes in the methods and the techniques, praising the importance of the conference to preserve the Francophone and its growth.
The panel discussions were launched after the opening ceremony and lasted for two days. University professors and specialists in French language and Francophone issues presented research papers and important studies on the cultural and moral decline and ways to nurture these values and culture. Other papers addressed the core of the social routines in Lebanon and the world due to their human impact and their cultural heritage which portray the contemporary society. Likewise, the contributions of technology and social networking means have influenced culture and rendered it as contemporary.