September in France is traditionally marked by a few recurring events: French schoolchildren and students find their way back to their desks, political parties organize their ‘universities’ and some Alliance françaises all around the world get a new Director.
Delhi is no exception: Jean-François Ramon, the previous Director, has left the Indian capital (in his case, to embrace a new life of leisure and personal journeys: he has officially retired), and here I am, Stephane Amalir, the new Director, happy and grateful, even lucky, to be starting this New Adventure with you all.
New Adventure indeed as can be seen by the superlatives: the Alliance française de Delhi is the third biggest among the 800 other Alliances all over the world, in terms of the number of students and teaching hours, from a country that is soon to have the largest population in the world.
But the Alliance française de Delhi is yours before all else: it is the place where you come to learn French for a multitude of reasons, ranging from the desire to be able to order a “baguette de pain avec du fromage, s’il vous plait” to the aim of studying at a “grande école”; it is the place where you can come to browse through tens of thousands of documents in the French language on a huge variety of subjects; it is a place where you can come and listen to a live piano concert, admire an exhibition that you cannot see anywhere else, to watch a classic francophone movie or the latest film from a famous French director.
And when I say “a place”, you understand of course that I mean both a physical address and a virtual space: the Alliance has truly reached universality and is present on earth as well as in the cloud.
The COVID-19 pandemic is here as it is everywhere, and we need to protect ourselves and our loved ones, but we also need to continue to work, to entertain, to live, and the Alliance française de Delhi is full of Life. I can only repeat that I feel honored that the executive Direction has been offered to me, and I am certain that with the help of the Governing Body, the administrative staff, and the teachers, we will be able not only to maintain its excellence and its position, but to go further, and to offer more.
Alliance Française de Delhi