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French & Francophone Studies

Primary Sources in French Studies

What you will use as primary sources in French Studies will depend on the context of your assignment:

  • An assignment on some aspect of French civilization could use art or film as primary sources. 
  • An assignment for a French literature class would use literary texts as primary sources. 
  • A class on contemporary popular French culture could use current magazines or newspapers.


Includes the searchable full text of over 3,000 French texts from the twelfth through the twentieth centuries! A special highlight is the eighteenth-century Encyclopédie!


Visual materials, including images, are examples of primary sources. There are many image collections in ARTstor that are pertinent to French Studies, including the Languages and Literature featured group which "highlights Artstor content related to languages and literature, including images of renowned authors and depictions of literary themes and characters, as well as contextual images that enhance understanding of the time periods and cultures shaping literary production."

Learn more about ARTstor collections relevant to Languages and Literature.

French Magazines

Paris-Match magazine

Collins Library subscribes to the print format of some popular French magazines. Past issues are located downstairs in the periodical collection, organized alphabetically by title.

The magazine collection includes:

  • Paris-Match
  • L'express

French Language Current Newspapers

French Films

Collins Library has a growing collection of French cinema on DVD and through streaming video platforms. You can also request DVDs from SUMMIT and other libraries via ILL.

Search by the film's title, by the author/creator, or do a keyword search on your topic in Primo to see which films are available.

Selected Digital Collections and Primary Sources Online

Puget Sound Archives & Special Collections, French Studies

The Archives & Special Collections collects, preserves, and makes available primary source material documenting life at the University as well as collections representing regional, national and international issues.

A small selection of material is listed below, for additional sources, please contact

Bernard, Jean Louis, Tours d’arithmétique contains arithmetic exercises as well as numerous hand drawn illustrations from 1810.

Sarrans, B. (Bernard), Memoirs of General Lafayette and of the French revolution of 1830.

Descartes, René, Les principes de la philosophie, 1659.

Archives & Special Collections Hours

The Archives & Special Collections is located on the second floor of the Collins Memorial Library.

Set up an appointment: We are open to researchers by appointment Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. To make an appointment, email or book online

We look forward to assisting you!