Bonnie Arden Robb
- Associate Professor Emerita of French
30 E. Main Street
319 Jastak-Burgess Hall
Newark, DE 19716
Bonnie Arden Robb taught at the University of Delaware from 1976 until her retirement in 2014. Her fields of specialization were French literature of the eighteenth century, with special emphasis on women writers, and foreign language pedagogy.
Dr. Robb taught courses in French literature, especially literature of the Enlightenment. She also enjoyed teaching French conversation, reading and composition courses, and French for Business. As coordinator of the department’s Foreign Language Teacher Education Program for over twenty years, she regularly offered courses and practica in foreign language teaching methods, and loved working with student teachers of French, German, Italian, Latin, and Spanish.
Dr. Robb’s publications include a monograph, Félicité de Genlis: Motherhood in the Margins, as well as articles on the works of Diderot, Graffigny, and Genlis, and on foreign language pedagogy.
She was particularly drawn to study eighteenth/nineteenth-century writer Félicité de Genlis because Genlis was an educator as well as an author, overseeing the education of royal children in an era when the education of princes was not ordinarily entrusted to a woman, and writing treatises on public education and women’s education at a time when those were often neglected. Biological mother to three and adoptive mother to over twenty children, Genlis’s experience as well as her literary exploration of the role of mother offer rich insights into the period in which she lived.
Dr. Robb served as Associate Chair of the Department from 2003-2013, and as Coordinator of Foreign Language Teacher Education from 1991-2013. She served on several statewide foreign language commissions and for several years was Coordinator of Teacher Education for the College of Arts and Sciences. Most recently, her service within the department included chairing the Undergraduate and Graduate Assessment Committees and co-chairing the departmental Academic Program Review Committee. She especially enjoyed serving as a director of study abroad programs to Caen and to Paris.
- Foreign Language Advocate of the Year Award, Delaware Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, 2009.
- Award for Outstanding Advisement, College of Arts & Sciences, 2002.
- Order of Excellence, Delaware State Board of Education, 1997.
- Teacher of the Year Award, Delaware Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, 1992.
- National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship Award, 1990.
- Folger Institute Fellowship, 1984.
In the year and a half since her retirement, Dr. Robb has traveled frequently, helped direct a study abroad program in Denmark and Switzerland, and made a pilgrimage, walking (part of) the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain.
- Ph.D., French Literature, Bryn Mawr College, 1985
- M.A., French Literature, University of Delaware, 1972
- B.A., French and Foreign Language Education, University of Delaware, 1969