Haitian Creole

Two child smile while holding jugs on their headHaitian Creole, often called simply Creole or Kreyōl, is a language based largely on 18th Century French, some African languages, as well as languages, such as Arawak, English, Arabic, Portuguese, Spanish, Spanish, and Taino. It is spoken by 10 – 12 million people, in Haiti, the Bahamas, Belize, Canada, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Dominican Republic, France, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Ivory Coast, Martinique, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago, parts of the United States, and Venezuela.

Fall Courses 

CREOLE 101 / 701 (Elementary Creole I) MWF 10:15 – 11:15 pm

An introduction to the essential elements of Haitian Creole or Kreyòl language and aspects of Haitian culture. The first of the two-semester sequence of elementary Haitian Creole or Kreyòl, the course provides practice in understanding, speaking, reading, and writing the language, culturally contextualized through units on health care, Haitian women’s rights issues, and unpaid child servants (restavèk). Students will acquire enough vocabulary and idioms to be able to interact with Haitians. Taught in Haitian Creole. No pre-requisite

CREOLE 203 / 703 (Intermediate Creole I) MWF 12-12:50pm

First semester of intermediate Haitian Creole or Kreyol. This course moves beyond survival skills in Creole to more complex social interactions and expressions of analysis and opinion. Intermediate skills in understanding, speaking, writing, reading will be contextualized within a broad range of issues such as rural life in Haiti, religion, frenchified Creole vs popular Creole, through texts, poems, and excerpts taken from novels in Haitian Creole. Students will learn to carefully follow contemporary events and debates in Haitian culture using internet resources in Creole. Pre-requisite: Creole 102 or equivalent. Taught in Haitian Creole.

CREOLE 301 (offered every other year)

This class is designed to help students sharpen their listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills in Kreyòl at an advanced level while exploring different themes related to Ayiti such as literature(s), language(s), school system in Haiti, history, and different types of Haitian music. In addition, students will be able to work on different songs and music groups that left their mark on Haitian music for the past 50 years as well as Haitian films. Prerequisites: Creole 204 or completion of Advanced Intermediate Creole at any institution that offers Intensive Haitian Creole class or any native speaker who is fluent in reading and writing the language.

Spring courses

CREOLE 102 / 702 (Elementary Creole II)

An introduction to the essential elements of Haitian Creole or Kreyòl language and aspects of Haitian culture. The second of the two-semester sequence of elementary Haitian Creole or Kreyòl, the course provides practice in understanding, speaking, reading, and writing the language, culturally contextualized through units on health care, Haitian women’s rights issues, and unpaid child servants (restavèk). Students will acquire enough vocabulary and idioms to be able to interact with Haitians. Taught in Haitian Creole. Pre-requisite: 101/701 or instructor permission

CREOLE 204 / 704 (Intermediate Creole II)

Second semester of intermediate Haitian Creole or Kreyol. This course moves into more complex social interactions and expressions of analysis and opinion. Intermediate skills in understanding, speaking, writing, reading will be contextualized within a broad range of issues such as rural life in Haiti, religion, frenchified Creole vs popular Creole, through texts, poems, and excerpts taken from novels in Haitian Creole. Students will learn to carefully follow contemporary events and debates in Haitian culture using internet resources in Creole. Pre-requisite: Creole 203 or equivalent. Taught in Haitian Creole.

CREOLE 302 (Advanced Creole II) (offered every other year)

This class is designed to help students sharpen their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills at an advanced level so that they will be able to make themselves understood by native speakers while using proverbs, historical references, common idiomatic expressions, and even simple jokes. To do so, students will explore the archives of Radio Haiti-Inter available at Duke University which cover a range of significant themes that are linked with current events. All of these explorations will be supported by films, songs, poems, and paintings that go with each theme that will be studied in class. Prerequisite: Creole 301.

Creole Faculty: Jacques Pierre

Pierre, Jacques