Katie Clarke


Humans of Dijon: Mohammed

“Living in France has been hard because of the language, but I love the museums and monuments here and I love to travel.  Besides France, I’ve been to Qatar, Malaysia, the Maldives, Bahrain, Egypt, and Spain.  I would also love to see the U.S.”

*I asked him if he planned to return to Dubai after his studies in France*

“Dubai is my home.  I don’t want to live anywhere else.  I love my family and miss my mom’s cooking.  I am the second oldest of 7 boys – one lives in Germany, and two others are studying in Malaysia… Actually, I got engaged 6 months ago, so really I love Dubai because my love is in Dubai.  Her name in Eman, which means Faith in English.  She is studying French literature at the University of Dubai, so she speaks French very well and will come to live with me when I move to Toulouse next year.  I love her very much.”

Humans of Paris: Moriell

“I moved from Oregon to Hawaii 5 years ago.  It was a journey; I found a part time job, and then a full-time job, which I hated.  So I went back to school and just got my degree and an internship, which has allowed me to get a job that I love.  Hawaii is small though.  There’s just not much happening on the islands.  Coming to Europe has me thinking about moving again.”

*I asked where she would like to move*

“I’m not sure – maybe Spain?  I’ve never been, but I speak some Spanish and I’d never visited Hawaii before I decided to move there.”

Humans of Dijon: Pop

“Je viens de Sénégal, mais j’ai travaillé à New York, à un restaurant s’appelle ‘Route 66.’  C’est à côté de Colombia Université.  J’y ai travaillé quelques mois, mais après trois mois il fallait que je revienne en France à cause de mon visa.  Je préférerais habiter aux États-Unis, mais c’est très dur d’obtenir une ‘green carte.'”

“I’m from Senegal, but I worked in New York, at a restaurant called ‘Route 66.’  It’s next to Columbia University.  I worked there several months, but I had to return to France because of my visa.  I would prefer to live in the United States, but it’s extremely difficult to get a green card.”

Humans of Dijon: Samuel

(Samuel is a student studying French at CIEF – Centre International d’Études Françaises)

“I’ve liked French since I was around 12 years old (or something like that) because my step-grandmother spoke French, my step-sisters and mother spoke French – everyone in my family spoke French.  They lived in France some years ago, and then they moved to Venezuela.”

“I want to study Psychology or maybe something related to health but not, like, medicine.  Maybe become a Paramedic or something.  But basically, when I was a kid and a teenager I spent much time playing football and actually my dream was to become a professional football player.  But now it’s really complicated: you have to be really, really good.  So right now I’m just trying to find any other way.  I probably will still play football, but maybe not as a professional.  In Venezuela I was playing for a 3rd Division team.  It actually wasn’t paid, but, you know, sometimes you have to play against teams that are professional so that they have the chance to see you – that’s how this business is.  When I moved to Luxembourg [in September of the last year] it was really hard to find a team because football works with transfer markets and that means that I wasn’t able to play until December more or less).  And when December arrived, surprise, I’m moving to Dijon!”  

Humans of Dijon: Monsieur Tourage

“J’ai travaillé ici depuis presque 35 ans et j’ai rencontré 35 different nationalities jusqu’à maintenant.  Je suis très content pour ça, et j’ai beaucoup d’amis qui sont de partouts, qui étaient les étudiants mais ont des maries et des enfants maintenant.  J’ai vu aussi d’autres histoires ici avec des étudiants étrangers par exemples, une américaine avec un francais une norvégienne avec un grec, qui se sont rencontrés ici, après, ils sont se maries.  J’avait pensé qu’il y a beaucoup de différences entres les japonais, les français, et les américains.  Ou entre un anglais et, je ne sais pas, un marocain ou un tunisian.  Mais, à la fin quelque chose que j’ai appris ici par ces expériences, est que tout le monde, au fond, ils ont les mêmes sentiments.”

“I have worked here (at the International Student Residence) for close to 35 years and I have met close to 35 different nationalities up until this point.  I am very happy to have this opportunity, as I have many friends from all over who were students here but who are now married and have children.  I have also witnessed many other stories and relationships between international students who met each other here and ended up getting married, for example: an American girl with a French guy, or a Norwegian girl with Greek guy.  I had thought that there were many differences between the Japanese, the French, and the Americans.  Or between a British person and, I don’t know, a Moroccan or a Tunisian person.  But at the end, something I have learned from these experiences is that everyone, fundamentally, shares the same feelings.”

Humans of Dijon: Pascale Ducamin

(Pascale is a French professor at the Université de Bourgogne)

Je suis contre les stéréotypes qui sont transmis souvent par le media ou par les rumeurs stupides…etc.  J’ai beaucoup voyage du monde et j’ai toujours remarqué ca j’ai des images forcement avant de partir et quand j’arriver dans le pays, ce n’est pas forcement comme la réalité.   Je pense que c’est extrêmement important, peut-être encore plus de nos jours, de voyager vraiment, d’aller voir et pas seulement lire les stéréotypes.

J’encourage les jeunes le faites – voyager, passer du temps dans les autres pays, les autres cultures, rencontre les maximums des personnes étrangères – c’est la seule solution pour que le monde fonctionne.  Si chacune se referme dans ses frontières et ses idées sont un peu limites, ça peut pas marcher !  La globalisation, le monde global, doit bien-sûr être concerné de tous les domaines, pas seulement les échanges économiques, mais les échanges humains aussi.  Je pense que c’est la cause la plus importante à moi.  Ça, c’est le numéro un, cette cause là : les échanges des cultures.  J’aime bien l’aventure.  J’aime les nouvelles rencontres.  J’aime ce qui est nouveau.  J’aime ce qui est inconnu ; je trouve qu’il nous fait peur, mais moi, ce qui est inconnu m’intéresse.


I am against the stereotypes that are often shared by the media or by stupid rumors…etc.  I have traveled many places in this world and I have remarked how I had specific images in my head before leaving, and found that when I arrived in that country, they were not necessarily representative of reality. I believe that it’s extremely important, maybe more so in our current day, to really travel, to go truly see and not just read the stereotypes.

I encourage young people to do that – to travel, to spend time in other countries, other cultures, to meet the most amount of foreign people possible.  This is the only solution for the world to function.  If each person closes her/himself inside their horizons and his/her ideas are limited, it won’t work!  Globalization must of course be concerned about all domains, not just economic exchange, but also the exchange of humanity.  I think that’s the most important cause to me: the number one cause is the exchange of cultures.  I love adventure.  I love meeting new people.  I love what’s new.  I love the unknown, I find that generally it scares us, but for me the unknown is interesting.

Humans of Dijon: Stéphan Dugois

Meet Stéphan Dugois: French professor extraordinaire and lover of humor, culture, and humanity.

“*Je ne parle pas l’anglais très bien, mais je peux dire: Move your body, shake that ass.  Do you like my French accent?” (He laughs at himself as he asks this).

  * I don’t speak English very well, but I can say:… 


“Parler à racisme est à découvrir des choses que personne ne peut expliquer.”

To speak about racism is to discover things that no one is able to explain.

(While presenting a lecture on racial stereotypes and the history of racial discrimination against immigrants in his French civilization class).

Humans of Dijon

« J’ai choisi venir ici apprende le français parce que j’ai devenue plus et plus intéressée sur apprendre une deuxième langue, spécialement parce qu j’avais travaillé en Chine, mais je voudrais travailler entre la France et la Japon. »

“I chose to come here to learn French because I became more and more interested in learning a second language, especially because I had worked in China, but I would like to split my work between France and Japan.”

*We passed a Japanese restaurant in the middle of Dijon and stopped to look*

« Les prix à ce restaurant étaitaient trop cher!  En la Japon ce repas coûterait seulement 3 euros!  Si tu voudrais, je peux faire le cusine Japonais pour toi un jour! »

“The prices at that restaurant were too expensive!  In Japan, that meal would only cost 3 euros!  If you like, I can cook Japanese food for you sometime!”

Humans of Dijon: Morgan

“My host family has a cat that they call Monsieur Cat, so I think I’m going to call him Monsieur.”

“I tried to learn to play guitar – that was my new year’s resolution, but my future goals are learning to write some Arabic and speak Spanish”