Shanny Peer, Director of the Maison Française of Columbia University Receives Honor from French Minister Of Culture
New York, December 10, 2013 – Dr. Shanny Peer, Director of the Maison Française of Columbia University has been selected by the French government to receive the award of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters. Antonin Baudry, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy will present the insignia at a ceremony that will take place at the Maison Française on December 10th.
This award is presented in recognition of Dr. Peer’s strong commitment to and support of French culture and of her unwavering dedication to French-American intellectual and cultural exchange over the years. As the head of the Columbia Maison Française, she plays a major role in spotlighting innovative scholarship, fostering debate and dialogue, nurturing student interest in learning French, studying France and the Francophone world, and pursuing academic excellence in the arts and humanities. For over twenty years, Shanny Peer has helped build strong and lasting ties between French and American cultures, first as in her role as a scholar and teacher of French studies at the University of Vermont and then New York University, then as the Director of Policy Programs at the French-American Foundation and now as Director of the Maison Française. Through creative and stimulating programming, outreach, and collaboration with a variety of partners, she has shaped the Maison Française as a landmark for interdisciplinary studies and rich international collaboration between the French-speaking world and the United States.
“Shanny is an energetic, erudite and warm partner. This decoration comes in recognition of her passion for French history and her dedication to bringing French and American people closer through culture and exchange. I am honored to serve on the Board of the Maison Française of Columbia, which Shanny so elegantly directs”, stated Antonin Baudry, Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy.
Shanny Peer received her Ph.D. from New York University’s interdisciplinary Institute of French Studies in 1992. She taught French Studies for ten years, at the University of Vermont and at NYU. In 2000, she joined the French-American Foundation as Director of Policy Programs, and in 2009 she joined Columbia University as the Director of the Maison Française. Shanny Peer has written a number of scholarly articles and a book, France on Display: Peasants, Provincials, and Folklore in the 1937 Paris World’s Fair. She is also the author of several reports comparing French and American public policies, including Equal from the Start: Promoting Educational Opportunity for All Preschool Children: Learning from the French Experience and Equality of Opportunity in Education and Employment: French and American Perspectives.
The Cultural Services of the French Embassy provide a platform and resources for cultural exchange between French and American artists, intellectuals, and arts professionals. Based in New York City, Washington D.C., and eight other cities across the US, the Cultural Services’ principal fields of action are the arts, literature, cinema, French language programs and higher education. www.frenchculture.org