The Department of French Studies at Brown promotes an intensive engagement with the language, literature, and cultural and critical traditions of the French-speaking world. The Department offers both the B.A. and the PhD in French and Francophone Studies. Courses cover a wide diversity of topics, while placing a shared emphasis on language-specific study, critical writing skills, and the vital place of literature and art for intellectual inquiry. Undergraduate course offerings are designed for students at all levels: those beginning French at Brown, those continuing their study of language and those undertaking advanced research in French and Francophone literature, culture and thought. Undergraduate concentrators and non-concentrators alike are encouraged to avail of study abroad opportunities in their junior year, through Brown-sponsored and Brown-approved programs in France or in another Francophone country. Graduates in French and Francophone studies go on to pursue careers in a number of fields, including translation, public service, college and secondary education, publishing and the media.
For additional information, please visit the department's website: http://www.brown.edu/Departments/French/
FREN 0100. Basic French.
This is the first half of a two-semester course. Four meetings a week for oral practice. One hour of work outside of class is expected every day (grammar/writing, oral practice, reading). Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 0200. Basic French.
This is the second half of a two-semester course. Four meetings a week for oral practice plus one conversation hour. One hour of work outside of class is expected every day (grammar/writing, oral practice, reading). An accelerated track enables qualified students to go directly to FREN 0500 after FREN 0200. Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 0220. Reading French in the Arts and Sciences.
Designed to develop the reading competence in French for graduate students (or advanced undergraduates with permission of the instructor). Fundamentals of grammar and syntax are emphasized as well as reading skills in the fields of individual students. Successful completion should satisfy the foreign language requirement for graduate students in other departments. (Consult the relevant department.) No prerequisites. Not for graduate-level credit.
FREN 0300. Intermediate French I.
A semi-intensive elementary review with emphasis on all four skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing). Class activities include drills, small group activities, and skits. Class materials include an audio CD, videos, a French film, short stories, and various other authentic documents. Prerequisite: FREN 0200 or placement (Previous experience with French is required to take this class). Four meetings per week plus a 50-minute conversation section with TAs.
FREN 0400. Intermediate French II.
Continuation of FREN 0300 but may be taken separately. A four-skill language course that stresses oral interaction in class (three meetings per week plus one 50-minute conversation section). Materials include audio activities, film, and a novel. Short compositions with systematic grammar practice. Prerequisite: FREN 0300, FREN 0200 with permission, or placement.
FREN 0500. Writing and Speaking French I.
A four-skill language course that stresses oral interaction in class. Thematic units will focus on songs, poems, a short novel, a graphic novel, films and a longer novel. Activities include a creative project using Comic Life, and a systematic grammar review. Prerequisite: FREN 0400, FREN 0200 with written permission, or placement.
FREN 0520. Introduction to the Literary Experience.
Pre-requisite: FREN 0400; equivalent to FREN 0500 in language sequence. Language course in which discussions and writing exercises are based on readings in French and Francophone literature and film, focusing on geographic displacement and the relationship between place and identity. With grammar review and short papers. Texts include: Baudelaire, Maupassant, Eberhardt, van Cauwelaert, Ernaux.
FREN 0600. Writing and Speaking French II.
Prerequisite for study in French-speaking countries. Class time is devoted mainly to conversation and discussion practice. Writing instruction and assignments focus on essays, commentaries, and to a lesser degree, on story writing. Apart from reading assignments for discussion (press articles and literary excerpts), students select two novels to read. Prerequisite: FREN 0500 or placement. Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 0610. Writing and Speaking French II: International Relations.
Prerequisite for study in French-speaking countries. Continuation of FREN 500. Class time is devoted mainly to conversation and discussion practice. Same level as FREN0600. This course is designed for students who are interested in international relations. Discussions and writing assignments are related to global politics from French and Francophone perspectives and introduce students to the discourse of international relations in French. Prerequisite: FREN 0500. Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 0620. Writing and Speaking French II: Literature.
Prerequisite for study in French-speaking countries. Continuation of FREN 500. Class time is devoted mainly to conversation and discussion practice. Same level as FREN 0600. This course is designed for students who are interested in literature. Discussions and writing assignments are based on a selection of literary texts from the Francophone world and introduce students to the analysis of literature. Prerequisite: FREN 0500. Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 0720A. De l'Amour courtois au désir postmoderne.
From twelth-century courtly literature to contemporary film, this course explores the enduring romance between French culture and Eros. The ambiguities of desire are brought to the fore across changing religious and social contexts. Readings include Duras, Flaubert, Freud, and Baudrillard. Open to students who receive a 5 (AP test), 700 and above (SAT II) or with instructor's permission. First Year Seminar, open to first year students only. Please email Virginia_Krause@brown.edu if you have questions. Taught in French. FYS WRIT
FREN 0720B. The French Novel Today.
What does today's French novel look like? Reading ten prominent short novels (in English translation) from the last 20 years, students will be acquainted with the novelistic landscape of contemporary France, while also learning to approach through analysis and narrative theory the novel as genre. We will consider what kinds of questions these novels pose and how - be it regarding conditions specific to our time (human/inhuman, identity, technology, the globalized world, the everyday, dystopia...) or those unceasing questions of life, time, love, predicament, that every novel must ask, even while sometimes seeming not to. Taught in English. FYS WRIT
|Spr||FREN0720B||S01||25330||MWF||2:00-2:50(07)||'To Be Arranged'|
FREN 0720C. Down and Out in Paris.
This freshman seminar focuses on the culture and literature of the Parisian underbelly from the 19th century to the present. It looks at representations of the laboring, marginal, and criminal classes from both high and low literary perspectives, taking pains to anchor these readings in lived contexts. Authors studied will include Hugo, Baudelaire, Zola, Orwell, Dabit, Carco, Hemingway, Genet, Vargas. Taught in English. WRIT FYS
FREN 0750A. Lost in Translation: Les voyageurs français en Amérique de Chateaubriand à Baudrillard.
What characterizes American culture? What does America stand for politically, culturally? These are some of the vexing questions major French writers asked themselves when they visited America. In this course we will study networks of ideas and images which have shaped the dominant representations and myths of America in novels and essays by French writers, thinkers, travelers during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Two short papers and an oral exam.
FREN 0750B. Au carrefour des sciences sociales: introduction à l'interprétation de la fiction littéraire.
Introduction to several French approaches to literature relying on methods and knowledge drawn from sociology, history, anthropology, psychoanalysis, and semiotics. Topics include: "central" and "marginal" champs littéraires, literature and war, literature and memory, literary acts, and symbolic violence. Readings from representative French and francophone authors of the 20th century.
FREN 0750C. Cinéma et histoire.
Is cinema a reliable source of information? What value can one attribute to a cinematographic document? What is the status of a filmic representation of historical events like the French and Algerian Revolutions or World War II? Following the lead of historians, sociologists, film analysts and critics, the goal of this course is to study the complex relationships that exist between history as it is accounted for by historians and history as it is represented by filmmakers.
FREN 0750D. Nous et les autres: les Français et le monde de la Renaissance à la Révolution.
An exploration of early French encounters with and reactions to non-European cultures from 1500 to 1800. Studying travel narratives, essays, and fictional texts, we will examine the multiple ways that French identity attempts to come to terms with its "Others" during this crucial period of European colonial expansion. Texts by Cartier, Thevet, and Choisy; Montaigne, Molière, and Montesquieu, among others.
FREN 0750E. Lost in Translation: Representations of America by French Writers.
Is there a "true" America? In which ways is America different from Europe? What characterizes American culture? What does America stand for politically, culturally? In this course we will study networks of ideas and images which have shaped the dominant historical representations of America by French writers, thinkers, travelers during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Three short papers. Instructor permission required.
FREN 0750F. L'Idée de l'empire dans l'imaginaire français.
From the early nineteenth century to the 1931 Colonial Exposition in Paris and the Algerian Revolution, ideas and debates about slavery, race, and colonialism informed the ways in which French writers and intellectuals thought about empire and its relationship to national identity. This course examines how these debates took shape through contrasting imaginative conceptions of empire from the 1800s until the 1960s, when France lost most of her colonies. How did visions of empire contribute to the formation of French colonial identity, and what kind of purchase do these ideas have on contemporary French cultural and political life? In French.
FREN 0750G. L’animal dans la culture contemporaine.
From reports of animals stranded in conflict zones and natural calamities, to cute or clever animals cast in advertisements and popular media, from the rat of Ratatouille to the caged orangutan of Nénette, the new interest in the animal marks an age of heightened awareness of the costs and ironies of the human story. We will consider in this course significant representations of the animal in contemporary French and Francophone literature, film, visual art, cultural theory and media representations. We will also revisit earlier moments linking the animal to modernity, including early film/photography and urban history. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 0760A. Introduction à l'analyse littéraire.
On what terms and with what tools can we “read” a text? This class aims to provide the historical context, vocabulary, and tools for textual analysis by comparing traditional and innovative examples of the major genres (short story, novel, poetry, theater) of French and Francophone literature; we will also draw from the visual arts (painting, film, graphic novel). Students will be introduced to a range of analytical approaches to the text, including narrative theory, poetics, psychoanalysis, sociocriticism, and gender studies. Authors studied include Abirached, Balzac, Baudelaire, NDiaye, Perec, Racine, and Sand. WRIT
FREN 0980. Becoming French: Minorities and the Challenges of Integration in the French Republic (HIST 0980B).
Interested students must register for HIST 0980B.
FREN 1000A. Littérature et intertextualité: du Moyen-Age jusqu'à la fin du XVIIème s.
A chronological survey of French literature from the Grail romance to neo-classical tragedy. Topics will include the birth of courtly love, the Crusades, lyric poetry, and Humanism. Course discussions will be devoted to the close reading of texts by writers such as Marie de France, Chrétien de Troyes, Ronsard, Louise Labé and Montaigne. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not taken French at Brown.
FREN 1000B. Littérature et culture: Chevaliers, sorcières, philosophes, et poètes.
From the Middle Ages to the Age of Versailles, this course examines 6 foundational moments in French civilization: the Crusades, courtly love, humanism, the witch hunts, Cartesian reason, and the emergence of the autonomous self. Close scrutiny of literary texts and films will provide a window onto French civilization before the Revolution. Readings include medieval epic, Montaigne, and Descartes. In French. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not taken French at Brown. WRIT
FREN 1010A. Littérature et culture: Margins of Modernity.
A survey of French and Francophone works from the 18th century to the present that reflects on a number of cultural shifts, of challenges but also resistances to hierarchies (social, sexual, political); the urban context; legacies of colonization. Various figures of marginality to be studied: vagabonds and parvenus, dandies and courtesans, outcasts and pariahs. Authors to be studied include Prévost, Marivaux, Balzac, Baudelaire, Maupassant, Duras, Camara Laye and Rachid O. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not take French at Brown. Taught in French.
FREN 1010B. Modernités Littéraires: Du 18ème siècle jusqu'à nos jours.
A chronological survey of French literature introducing seminal texts from the last 300 years. Classes devoted to discussion and to the development of skills in close textual analysis. Authors to be studied include Graffigny, Balzac, Baudelaire, Zola, Apollinaire, Duras, and Ben Jelloun.
FREN 1020A. Histoire de la langue française: usages, politiques et enjeux du français.
A study of the evolution of the French language from the Middle Ages to the present. We will trace the main periods of this linguistic, social, historical and political development. Among topics to be explored: France’s encounter with English from the Norman conquest to the current so-called English “invasion,” the French Revolution’s destruction of dialects (patois), and the status of French in France’s former colonial empire. Through a variety of French and francophone texts we will investigate the transformations brought about by Feminists and by youth from the banlieues and examine the status of French outside of France. In French.
FREN 1030A. L'univers de la Renaissance: XVe et XVIe siècles.
An exploration of the cultural cosmos of Renaissance France through literature, visual culture, history, and film. What projects, fantasies, and nightmares characterize this stormy period in French history, from the birth of Humanism to the Wars of Religion? Other topics include the trial of Martin Guerre, court life, madness, and the New World. Readings in Montaigne, Louise Labé, among others.
FREN 1030B. The French Renaissance: The Birth of Modernity?.
This class will read works from the French Renaissance in historical and cultural context. Did the Renaissance mark the birth of what we call the modern period? So much of twentieth and twentieth-century thought relies on the notion that our modern paradigm came into being with the Renaissance. We will read literary works by writers such François Rabelais, Louise Labé, Marguerite de Navarre and Agrippa d'Aubigné in relation to both medieval and Renaissance writers and philosophers such as Jean Calvin, Martin Luther, Marsilio Ficino and Erasmus and political actors such as Francis Ist, Charles IX and Henry IV. Enrollment limited to 40.
FREN 1040A. Civilite et litterature.
How should one burp, pass gas, and spit in public? Should people use utensils when eating? How should a young woman react when a man speaks to her without her parents consent? Questions such as these preoccupied 17th-century France, which defined much of what we understand today to be civility (a.k.a. courtesy, good manners, politeness). In this course we will examine how literature makes civility seem either natural or normal or artificial and deceptive. We will see that civility became a powerful means of constructing the body and social categories (such as gender and class), but that it also led to far-reaching critiques of its own norms. Readings will include selections from conduct manuals (Faret and Courtin), comedies (Corneille and Molière), letters (Voiture and Sévigné), fairy tales (d'Aulnoy and Perrault), "moralist" writing (Pascal, La Rochefoucauld, La Bruyère), and cultural history (Chartier, Elias, and Foucault).
FREN 1040B. Pouvoirs de la scène: le théâtre du XVIIe siècle.
This course examines how 17th-century theater both reinforces and undermines the ideologies of absolutism, national identity, the nuclear family, and emerging bourgeois consciousness, among others. Special consideration will be given to the theory and performance of theater in the 17th century and the present. Readings will be supplemented with screenings of videos for the plays studied (as available). In addition to papers and oral presentations, students will stage selections from some of the plays studied. Plays by Rotrou, Corneille, Molière, Racine, and an opera by Quinault/Lully. Taught in French.
FREN 1040C. Le Grand Siècle à l'écran.
Why is the "Grand Siècle" depicted so frequently in contemporary French film? To answer this question we will explore the roles 17th-century culture plays in French identity through readings in history and literature and recent films focusing on 17th-century texts, personalities, or events. We will highlight both continuities and discontinuities between the 17th century and our own time. Readings by Corneille, Cyrano de Bergerac, Lafayette, Maintenon, Molière, Pascal, Racine, Sévigné. 10 films. Two short papers, two oral presentations, a weekly blog, and a final project (paper or multimedia project). Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not take French at Brown.
FREN 1040D. Molière et son monde.
In-depth study of Molière's theater and its cultural contexts. We will examine how Molière uses a variety of theatrical forms to portray the monarchy, social class, religion, medicine, and gender relations of seventeenth-century France. Plays by Molière will be studied alongside other literary texts and documents of the period as well as films (performances of plays, historical fiction).
FREN 1050A. "Family Values": Représentations littéraires de la famille au 18eme siècle.
This course will study the "invention" of the bourgeois family in 18th-century literature. It will examine particularly the ideological construct that supports this literature. Special attention will be given to the way in which this literature defines and orders family relationships around the notions of state, hierarchy, nature, and gender. Readings in Prévost, Diderot, Rousseau, Mme de Charrière, and Sade.
FREN 1050B. Fictions de l'individu.
Explores various expressions of the self in the 18th century, especially with regard to conflicts with social constraints, hierarchical gendering, the ordering of class structures, and the effort to normalize sexuality. Notions of autonomy, freedom, and happiness, the chief pursuits of the Enlightenment, are examined. Authors studied include Marivaux, Voltaire, Rousseau, Casanova, Diderot, and Mme de Châtelet.
FREN 1050C. Le Siècle des Lumières: Culture, Pensée, Société.
A presentation of various aspects of the Age of Reason through its most representative texts. This course examines the period in its diversity, from its preoccupation with philosophy to its discovery of sensibility, from the development of libertinism to the affirmation of women and claims of liberty. Readings in Voltaire, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Beaumarchais, Diderot, Denon, Françoise de Graffigny, and Bernardin de Saint-Pierre.
FREN 1050D. The Age of Voltaire: Culture, Pensée, Société.
A presentation of various aspects of the eighteenth century through its most representative texts. This course examines the period in its diversity, from its preoccupation with philosophy to its discovery of sensibility, from the development of libertinism to the affirmation of women and claim of liberty. Authors to be read include Montesquieu, Rousseau, Sedaine, Beaumarchais, Diderot, and Françoise de Graffigny.
FREN 1050E. French Lovers: Séduction et libertinage sous l'Ancien Régime.
A study of love and relationships in the Old Regime. The course will concentrate on the major actors (the libertine, the fop), on the spaces (the boudoir, the salon, the garden), on social practices (conversation). Authors will include Molière, Mme de Lafayette, Crébillon fils, Laclos and film adaptations by Frears and Forman.
FREN 1050F. Espace public; espace privé.
This course will study the interpenetration of spaces in the 18th century, the domination of the public space but the emergence of the private. We will attempt to draw the frontiers of these spaces in a variety of texts. We will explore social spaces (the salon, the café), the domestic space (cabinet, bedroom), places of leisure and exteriority (gardens). Readings in Crébillon fils, Denon, Bastide, Diderot, Mme de Charrière, Rutlidge, Palissot.
FREN 1050G. Le corps des Lumières.
This course will examine various representations of the body during the Age of the Enlightenment. We will study how these representations are influenced by notions of race and nation, discipline (Foucault), and by the Revolution. Texts by Montesquieu, Graffigny, Voltaire, Foucault, and historical context provided by Foucault, Outram and Hunt.
FREN 1050H. The Age of Voltaire: Lumières et modernité.
A presentation of various aspects of the eighteenth century through its principal representative texts. This course examines the period in its various preoccupations: with philosophy, its discovery of sensibility, the development of libertinism, and the pursuit of liberty. Authors to be read include Voltaire, Marivaux, Rousseau, Sedaine, Diderot, and Françoise de Graffigny.
FREN 1060A. Décadence.
Study of the notion of decadence in fin-de-siècle French culture. From scientific theories of degeneration to literary representations of sexual perversion, writers of the period were consumed by the specter of moral decay and social disease. This course will analyze fictional and non-fictional texts of the period by authors such as Péladan, Lorrain, Rachilde, Mendès, and Nordau.
FREN 1060B. Gender and the Novel.
This course explores how major authors represented gender and sexuality. Obsessed with unlocking the mystery of femininity, novelists attempted to represent truths about sexual difference while new scientific discourses (psychiatry, sexology, criminology) aimed to analyze gender and sexual deviance in objective terms. Authors include: Balzac, Flaubert, Zola, Rachilde, Foucault, and 19th-century scientific texts.
FREN 1060C. La texte réaliste.
This course will focus on realism, both as a literary movement of the second half of the 19th century and as a style present during other eras (such as romantic realism) and in other "non-realist" genres (poetry, science fiction, literature of the fantastic). How does a literary text convince its readers that it accurately copies reality? Does the realist novel have privileged themes (sexuality, the modern city, corruption)? Readings by Stendhal, Balzac, Gautier, Jules Verne, Flaubert, Coppée, Zola, Maupassant.
FREN 1060D. L'Orient littéraire.
This course is a study of the representations of the Orient (Turkey, Arabia, Persia) in the imaginary of classical French writers of the nineteen century. Through the analysis of the phantasms pertaining to the representations of Sexuality and Power, this course will also study a series of figures associated with the Orient like travestissement, melancholia, nostalgia, etc. in the novels of Montesquieu, Chateaubriand, Flaubert, Gautier, and others.
FREN 1060E. Gender, Sexuality and the Novel.
Examines novelistic constructions of gender and sexuality in relation to 19th-century French culture and literary movements, including romanticism, realism and naturalism, decadence, and the popular novel. Topics include constructions of homosexuality in literature and non-fiction, fatal femininity, besieged masculinity, sexuality and race, prostitution, bored housewives. Works by Balzac, Flaubert, Zola, Maupassant, Rachilde, accompanied by non-fictional sources in early sexology and criminology.
FREN 1060F. Paris: Capital of the 19th Century.
Nineteenth century Paris in interdisciplinary perspective--literature, art, history, politics, Haussmann's transformations of the city, revolution. Works by Balzac, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Rimbaud, Marx, Benjamin, Bernard Marchand, Ingres, Delacroix, Courbet, Manet, Caillebotte, Daumier. Classes in English, readings in original or translation depending on language proficiency of the student.
FREN 1060G. Boulevard du crime.
We will analyze criminality and its representations in nineteenth-century France in order to gauge the fears, aspirations, and ideologies of the period. We will read literature by such canonical authors as Balzac, Maupassant, and Zola, as well as popular detective novels. Non-fictional sources include criminological treatises, trial transcripts, and memoirs by prisoners. Secondary sources by Barthes, Foucault, Todorov.
FREN 1070A. Avant-Gardes.
We examine avant-garde groups and movements, including surrealism, Collège de Sociologie, Oulipo, existentialism, Tel Quel, situationnisme, Théâtre du Soleil, politique et psychanalyse, while trying to assess their aesthetic/political platforms and their performative strategies. Readings include (poetic) manifestoes, novels, plays and essays by Breton, Caillois, Bataille, Colette Peignot, Queneau, Satre, Sollers, Kristeva, Guy Debord, Cixous, Wittig, Irigaray, Catherine Clément.
FREN 1070B. Emergent literature: Postcolonial Nations and Cultural Identity.
Does a writer belong to a "nation"? To which nation does one belong when one writes in the language of one's former colonizer? Does political independence warrant the existence of a new nation? Finally: How does literature contribute to the emergence and consolidation of a new nation? Many writers faced these questions after the independence of their countries from French colonial rule. Analizes the answers Francophone writers offered to these perplexing questions in their novels and essays. Two short papers and a final essay.
FREN 1070C. Figures du roman français au XX siècle.
We will analyse novels by Marcel Proust, Jean Giono, Julien Gracq, Samuel Beckett, Marguerite Duras, Nathalie Sarraute, Le Clézio, Philippe Sollers, Annie Ernaux and Marie Redonnet while trying to assess the main tendencies of the contemporary French novel and the cultural evolution that led to it.
FREN 1070D. Le roman français au présent.
Reading and discussion of postmodernist novels of all kinds and shapes-lyrical or essayistic, minimalist or baroque, centered upon female or male subjectivities, or simply bringing an echo of inner debates, lost legends and eternal quests. Novelists include Le Clézio, Sollers, Ernaux, Germain, Rio, Redonnet, Savitzkaya, Chevillard, and Mauvigner. Two short essays and a final paper.
FREN 1070E. Littérature, appartenance et identité.
In this course, the analysis of a series of significant literary and critical texts written by French and Francophone contemporary writers will allow us to study the meaning of the emergence of new forms of identity and belonging in 20th-century modern French and Francophone writers. Three short papers.
FREN 1070F. Nations of Writers.
Does a writer belong to a "Nation"? How does literature contribute to the emergence and consolidation of a new Nation? These are two of the kinds of questions which will guide our reading of major contemporary French and Francophone writers. Works or excerpts of works by Bouraoui, Sebbar, Memmi, Derrida, Farés, Khatibi, Djebar, Béji, Cixous, Roumain and others. Two short papers and an oral exam.
FREN 1070G. Writing the Self: Memory, Childhood and the Novel.
The course will focus on autobiographical writings by Colette, Proust, Sarraute, Robbe-Grillet, Roche, Condé, and Barthes.
FREN 1070H. Literature and Social Thought: Le Roman Policier.
What does the popular genre of the roman policier teach us about modern French culture and society? What does it show about French political and social institutions? What does it reveal about French history? Readings of works by Boileau-Narcejac, Frédéric Dard, Sébastien Japrisot, J.P. Manchette, G. de villiers, Yasmina Khadra and others. Two short papers and an oral presentation.
FREN 1070I. Histoires d'animaux.
From fables and fairytales to postmodern pastiche, the presence of the animal, whether literal or allegorical, has worked as a critical counterpoint to that of the human. In this course we will consider some ways in which modern prose, poetry and film "think" - and increasingly mourn - humans' disappearing others. Authors include Michaux, Cendrars, Ponge, Bresson, Chevillard, Marker, Derrida.
FREN 1070K. Les années folles: le roman français dans les années 20.
This course explores social aspects of the French novel in the 1920s that have earned this period between the two world wars the name "Les Années Folles." We will first focus on the liberation of women, frivolity, sexual ambiguity and conceptions of love at the time. We will then discuss the demobilized writers, whose disarray, procrastination, suicidal tendency are the characteristics of a generation disillusioned by a society that no longer offers exciting prospects. Our meetings will also be punctuated by reflections on new autobiography as well as on new narrative techniques illustrated by the studied works. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not taken French at Brown. Taught in French.
|Fall||FREN1070K||S02||17204||TTh||10:30-11:50(13)||(M. Al Sahoui)|
FREN 1100F. Contes et nouvelles du Moyen Age.
Storytelling in medieval French courts, villages, and towns. Works read (in modern French translation) include love tales, fables, chivalric adventures, comic escapades, earthy anecdotes, stories of warfare and politics. Class discussions investigate the tales and consider how medieval listeners and readers responded to them. Brief lectures on questions of cultural context.
FREN 1100G. Old French Language and Literature Seminar.
An introduction to reading Old French prose and poetry. Grammar and vocabulary will be acquired by reading, translating, and discussing early texts in relation to European political and cultural developments. Prose selections: short stories, travel narratives, and chronicles. Verse selections: epic, lais, romance, fabliaux, satires, and lyrics. Taught in English.
FREN 1100H. Histoires et contes du Moyen Age.
Stories told from 1100 to 1500 to instruct and entertain audiences in courts and towns. We read modern French translations of medieval legends, romances, chronicle accounts of warfare and politics, comic yarns, and earthy anecdotes. We relate each of those narratives to medieval social conditions, politics and culture.
FREN 1100I. Hostages and Prisoners of War in Medieval French Literature.
In the Middle Ages, being taking as a hostage or prisoner of war was a relatively common occurrence, depicted often in literature of the period. Through this theme, the course will examine some of the great works of the French Middle Ages, from Chrétien de Troyes's Lancelot to the lyric poetry of Charles d'Orléans. The representation of captivity will allow us to investigate the era's historical and political realities, its cultural and linguistic conflicts, and its conceptions of personal identity. The course will include instruction in reading medieval French.
FREN 1110A. Fictions of Greatness.
F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby is an American example of a persistent tendency in the modern novel-the dramatization of variously heroic, ironic, comic, tragic, corrupt, and even criminal quests for human achievement. This course provides a close study of a series of major French novels, from Balzac to Malraux, against the background of theoretical formulations from the German Bildungsroman to Lukacs' Theory of the Novel, including feminist revisions.
FREN 1110B. Gender, Sexuality and the Novel.
Examines constructions of gender and sexuality in relation to the schools and styles of the 19th- and early 20th-century French novel, including romanticism, realism, decadence, and the popular novel. Works by Balzac, Flaubert, Zola, Maupassant, Rachilde, and Marguerite, accompanied by non-fictional sources in early sexology.
FREN 1110C. Le Roman Français de puis 1990.
Reading and discussion of postmodernist novels of all kinds and shapes, lyrical or essayistic, minimalist or baroque, centered upon female or male subjectivities, or simply bringing an echo of inner debates, lost legends and eternal quests. Novelists include Duras, Sarraute, Sollers, Le Clézio, Ernaux, Germain, Rio, Redonnet, Savitzkaya, Chevillard, and Mauvigner. Two short essays and a final paper.
FREN 1110D. Lire le roman.
A close look at narrators, fictional characters, and readers in 19th- and 20th-century novels to see how ideological and psychological insights, emotions, and memory shape the reading of narrative fiction. Pays special attention to how empathy, sympathy, and persuasion make for an engaged, interested, and possibly resistant reader. Writers studied include Balzac, Flaubert, Stendhal, Proust, Colette, and Sarraute.
FREN 1110E. Mémoire, oubli, histoire.
The role of memory, forgetting, and the past and their repercussions on the present as depicted in film and works of French narrative fiction, including La Princesse de Clèves, Le Rouge et le noir, Le Temps retrouvé, Mémoires d'Hadrien, La Migration des coeurs. The focus will be on personal and cultural identity, ethical questions, and literary aesthetics--informed by readings on narrative, philosophy, and psychology.
FREN 1110F. Le Roman contemporain.
In this course we will read a selection of French and Francophone novels from 1985 to 2015. Authors include Patrick Modiano, Marie NDiaye, Lydie Salvayre, Marie Redonnet, Emmanuel Carrère and François Bon. Placing these novels in dialogue with key voices from critical theory (Cixous, Barthes, Derrida, Kristeva), we will pursue through the semester a sustained reflection on major contemporary “problematics” including identity, subjecthood, hospitality, history, genealogy, gender, memory and ghosts. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not taken French at Brown. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 1110G. En Marge: Exilés et Hors-la-Loi au Moyen Age.
Through a close reading of medieval texts from a diverse selection of genres and voices, this course will seek to understand not only those excluded from medieval society, but also their relationship to that society. The thematic focus will be on the condition of marginality itself—the way in which the margins belong fully neither to the outside nor to the inside, but describe a meeting point between them. In this course, students will be asked to consider the marginal space as it provides a dual perspective on excluded individuals and on the world that excludes them.
FREN 1120A. Le théâtre de la Belle Epoque.
The civic festivities, universal expositions, bohemian gaiety, and commercial entertainments of the Third Republic are matched by a lively confrontation between vaudeville, naturalist comédie rosse, symbolist theater and the emerging absurd comedy of the anti-théâtre. We'll study representative plays by Claudel, Maeterlinck, Feydeau, Courteline, Rostand, and Jarry, comparing them with paintings and prints by Degas, Seurat, or Toulouse-Lautrec.
FREN 1120B. Le théâtre des femmes au Xe siècle.
We will discuss French and Francophile female playwrights and directors among whom Marguerite Yourcenar, Marguerite Duras, Nathalie Sarraute, Arianne Mnouchkine, Hélène Cixous, Marie Redonnet; Claire Lejeune, Suzanne Lilar, Pascale Tison; Antonine Maillet, Anne Hébert, Carole Fréchette, Jeanne-Mance Delisle, Louise Roy; Simone Schwartz-Bart, etc. Two short essays, one class presentation and a final paper.
FREN 1120C. Scenes of Passion and Reason: Théâtre et culture au XVIIIe siècle.
A survey of the major works and dramatic essays that span the 18th century from the Rococo to the Revolution. Readings in Marivaux, Diderot, Voltaire, Mercier, Beaumarchais, Maréchal, Chénier.
FREN 1120D. L'Impromptu.
What is an impromptu and when did it appear as a theatrical genre? What are the personal/professional circumstances in the life of a playwright that are addressed in impromptus? We will answer such questions while discussing clusters of impromptus; impromptu plays; plays incorporating impromptu components; and impromptu films. Readings from Molière, Marivaux, Rostand, Giraudoux, Ionesco, Beckett, Obaldia and Duras.
FREN 1130A. Introduction à la poésie.
In this course we will read poetry from the major movements of the 19th and 20th centuries (romanticism, symbolism, surrealism, contemporary poetry) and explore poetic productions that have been deemed marginal to the dominant tradition (including poetry of the négritude and women's poetry). Poets read will include Lamartine, Musset, Vigny, Hugo, Desbordes-Valmore, Baudelaire, Verlaine, Rimbaud, Mallarmé, Laforgue, Vivien, Valéry, Apollinaire, Eluard, Senghor, Césaire, Ponge, Char.
FREN 1130B. Révolution poétique - à la française: Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Mallarmé.
Primary emphasis: intensive study of the poetic production and theoretical texts of three writers who substantially contributed to the radical transformation of modern Western poetry. Additionally: attention to historical contexts and to influences on later writers and theories. Enrollment limited to 20.
FREN 1130C. Studies in French Poetry: Baudelaire, Poète Provacateur.
Baudelaire's writing in Marxist, feminist and post-colonial perspectives.
FREN 1130D. Le monde moderne et le poète.
What kind of language, what sort of act, is a poem? How might poetry invent the conditions of a modern world? In this course on 20th century French and Francophone poetry, we shall think about space, fragmentation, the everyday, the subject, the object, reading works by Apollinaire, Cendrars, Michaux, Césaire, Ponge, Du Bouchet, amongst others.
FREN 1130E. Le Poétique et le quotidien.
In this course on the relationship between the poetic and the ordinary, unremarkable or otherwise apparently “non-lyrical” matters and textures of modern living, we will consider formal and conceptual innovations in French poetry through the last 100 years as it has responded to a changing world, and continually reimagined the place of poetry in it. After situating certain coordinates of our investigation in the early decades of the 20th century (Apollinaire, Cendrars, Char, technology, war, speed, time) we will read works by later and contemporary poets including Francis Ponge, Jacques Roubaud, Michelle Grangaud, Sabine Macher. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not take French at Brown. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 1150A. Literature and Cinema.
Introduces the fertile relationships that exist between literature and cinema. The study of several cinematographic adaptations of novels helps to answer the following questions: How does a novel translate into a film? What characterizes each medium? What kind of aesthetic impact did cinema have on literary works? Novels by Cocteau, Balzac, Zola, Maupassant, Flaubert, and Gide and films by Renoir, Truffaut, Chabrol, Rivette, and others.
FREN 1150B. Introduction to French Cinema.
French Cinema: The First 50 Years. This course explores the history of French cinema and its relation to politics, history, technology and art during the first half of the 20th Century. Readings, discussions, and lectures in French and English. Films with English and French subtitles.
FREN 1150C. French Cinema: The First Fifty Years.
This course explores the history of French cinema and its relation to politics, history, technology and art during the first half of the 20th century. Readings, discussions, and lectures in French and English. Films with English and French subtitles. Screenings outside of class.
FREN 1150D. French Cinema from 1945 to Today.
This course explores the history of French cinema and its relation to politics, history, technology and art from 1945 up to the present. Readings, discussions, and lectures in French and English. Films with English and French subtitles. (FREN 1150B is recommended but not a prerequisite.) Screenings outside of class.
FREN 1210A. Chretien de Troyes.
Author of some of the earliest and best Arthurian romances, Chrétien de Troyes is the central figure of 12th-century French literature. He still delights us with his clever storytelling, his sense of humor, and the playful irony of his psychological observations. We will study his five major romances, relating them to the court culture and the intellectual world in which he lived. The romances will be read in modern French prose translation, with close-up work on selected passages in the original Old French verse.
FREN 1210B. Marcel Proust.
The focus will be on Proust's enduring masterpiece A la recherche du temps perdu, and the different perspectives this compelling novel invites, including the most intimate and personal (emotions, dreams, sexuality) as well as the communal and cultural (family, society, history and the arts.) The pervasive role of time, memory, and affect will be central to our discussion. Open to undergraduate and graduate students.
FREN 1210C. Reading Proust at the Turn of the Century.
Proust's enduring masterpiece A la recherche du temps perdu, viewed from different perspectives: philosophical, psychological, and cultural. Open to undergraduate and graduate students interested in the rich rewards of reading this complex novel and in considering the impact of narrative fiction on our lives.
FREN 1210D. Marguerite Duras.
A course devoted to the novels, plays, films, essays and interviews of Marguerite Duras. Two short essays and a final paper.
FREN 1310A. "French Lovers"; Séduction et libertinage sous l'Ancien Régime.
A study of love and relationships in the Old Regime. The course will concentrate on the major actors (the libertine, the fop) , on the spaces (the boudoir, the salon, the garden), on social practices (conversation). Authors will include Molière, Mme de Lafayette, Crébillon fils, Laclos and film adaptations by Honoré, Frears, and Forman.
FREN 1310B. Altérités sexuelles, perversions littéraires.
Traces nearly 100 years of male and female homosexuality in literature. Examines new discourses on sexual deviance, whose emergence coincided with the "invention" of homosexuality in the mid-19th century and which then exploded with the Decadent movement at the turn of the century. Also considers some medical texts that helped define the terms of sexual deviance. Authors include Baudelaire, Verlaine, Huysmans, Rachilde, Eekhoud, Zola, Vivien, Margueritte, Colette.
FREN 1310D. L'Orient littéraire.
Examines the representations of the Orient (Turkey, Arabia, Persia) in the imagery of French and Francophone writers of the 19th and 20th centuries. Through the analysis of the fantasms pertaining to the representations of Sexuality and Power, this course will study the dominant figures associated with the Orient. Two short papers and an oral presentation.
FREN 1310E. Paris, ville des Lumières.
Representations of the city; the crowd; the rise of the individual; the narrator as spectator and promeneur; narratives of social mobility; speed and circulation; sex and the city; Paris as a cultural place. Various authors to be studied: Marivaux, Fougeret de Monbron, Rousseau, Diderot, Mercier, Restif de la Bretonne. Taught in French.
FREN 1310F. Penser la France et l'Europe.
We will read philosophers (e.g. Levinas, Irigaray, Lipvetsky, Ferry, Renaut, and Le Doeuff), anthropologists (Dumont and Favret-Saada), and historians (Duby and Perrot) while debating such issues as individualism versus holism, modernity versus postmodernity, autonomy versus freedom, democracy, feminism, violence, fashion, and France versus Europe.
FREN 1310G. War, Image, Text.
This course treats literary and film narratives of war from the 19th-century to the present (Franco-Prussian War, WWI, WWII, colonial wars, the Gulf war.) Topics include the uses and limits of realism in war narratives; issues of nationalism, patriotism, collaboration, resistance, civil rights, and the politics of gender in wartime. Students will research non-fictional sources to supplement class readings.
FREN 1310H. Contes et identités francophones.
How do folktales define national and ethnic identities in France, Sénégal, the Caribbean, Louisiana, and Canada? How have the study and rewriting of these traditions redefined such identities? We will consider these questions by studying tale-types from all of the above regions, tales specific to each, and literary reworkings of folktales by writers, including d'Aulnoy, Perrault, Pourrat, Diop, and Chamoiseau.
FREN 1310I. Femmes écrivains.
This course will both introduce students to important female-authored texts from the 19th century to the present, and address theoretical issues pertaining to women and writing. Topics include: the relation of gender to genre; development of feminist thought; women's relation to masculine literary traditions. George Sand, Rachilde, Colette, Simone de Beauvoir, Marguerite Duras, Annie Ernaux.
FREN 1310J. Special Topics in French Studies I: Ecritures du Moi: Disclosures of the Self.
A study of autobiographical writings beginning with the classics (Rousseau, Stendhal) and continuing with the legacy of the genre by contemporary writers. They will include Marguerite Duras, Annie Ernaux, Jean Claude Charles, François Weyergans, Catherine Cusset. Notions to be covered include memory and forgetting, fiction and reconstruction, writing, desire, and loss.
FREN 1310K. Short Stories.
What sort of story is the short story? What kinds of possibilities and pressures distinguish it from other forms? Attentive to its contained – and constrained – narrative economy, we shall study a range of examples of the genre, from 19th century realist and fantastic literature (Maupassant, Flaubert, Nerval) to modern French and Francophone texts (Camus, Sartre, Djebar, Condé, Ndiaye).
FREN 1320A. Apocalypses and Millennia.
A multidisciplinary investigation of figures such as Rimbaud, Van Gogh, the Surrealists, Simon, Blanchot, and Duras in the perspectives of history, philosophy, mysticism, literature, and the visual arts.
FREN 1320B. Du côté de la passion.
Focuses on the representation of emotions and passions in French novels from the 17th century to the present. In working out a new approach to characters in narrative fiction, the emphasis will be on perception and affect. In addition to novels, students read short essays on the nature of narrative, on emotions, and on aesthetic response. Novelists include Madame de Lafayette, Rousseau, Balzac, Flaubert, Proust, Colette, and Sarraute.
FREN 1320C. Ecrire au feminin II: littérature des femmes 18eme siècle jusqu'a nos jours.
This chronological survey of writing by women in France from the 18th century to the present day has two goals. The first is to introduce students to important poetry and prose texts by French women authors. Secondly, we will pose theoretical questions pertaining to women and writing, including the relation of gender to genre, the existence of gendered writing, the historical development of feminist thought, women's relation to masculine traditions, and the place of women's writing in the literary canon. Texts by Graffigny, Charrière, Duras, Stäel, Desbordes-Valmore, Sand, Vivien, Rachilde, Noailles, Colette, Beauvoir, Ernaux, Chédid, Cixous.
FREN 1320D. Ecrire au féminin: Women Writing in France.
Both introduces students to important female-authored texts from the 18th century to the present and addresses theoretical issues pertaining to women and writing. Topics include: the relation of gender to genre; the écriture féminine debate; development of feminist thought; women's relation to masculine literary traditions and the canon. Readings include Graffigny, Gouges, Staël, Desbordes-Valmore, Sand, Colette, Beauvoir, Duras, Bâ, Wittig, and Cixous.
FREN 1320E. Femmes écrivains.
French women writers from the 19th-century to the present. Topics include: hetero- and homosexualities, class and gender, the role of the mother, visibility in the public space. Texts by Sand, Rachilde, Colette, Beauvoir, Duras, Ernaux, Garreta.
FREN 1320G. Contes et identités francophones.
How do oral traditions define national and ethnic identities in France, Sénégal, the Caribbean, Louisiana, and Canada? How have the study and rewriting of these traditions redefined such identities? We will consider these questions by studying tale-types that are found in all of the above regions, tale-types that are specific to each, and literary reworkings of folktales by writers, including d'Aulnoy, Perrault, Pourrat, Diop, and Chamoiseau. Taught in French.
FREN 1320H. Ecritures de l'Ailleur.
This course will examine a range of works from the 20th century, attentive to how motifs of travel and the "elsewhere" have been reimagined in modern literature. Readings will include texts by Michaux, Gide, Sartre, Camus, Barthes and Toussaint. Some films (by Duras, Malle, Denis) will also be considered.
FREN 1320I. Literature and Social Thought: L'Utopie Littéraire.
For centuries literary utopias have been considered a means to reinvent the world's ideal desires/values. We will attempt to understand the role utopian texts have played in shaping the imaginary of generations of people in Europe, particularly in France. Entire texts or excerpts from novels, essays, cartoons or films by Campanella, Voltaire, Marivaux, Mercier, and others will be discussed.
FREN 1330A. Fairy Tales and Culture.
Fairy tales, which occur is almost every culture, encapsulate in (usually) succinct form many of the pressing concerns of human existence: family conflict, the struggle for survival, sexual desire, the quest for happiness, etc. This course explores why writers and readers have been attracted to the fairy-tale form through a study of its key elements and its uses in adult and children's literature, book illustration, and film. Special attention given to French contes de fées, along with North American, English, German, Italian and selected non-Western fairy tales. Discussions and readings in English with French, German, and Italian originals on reserve.
FREN 1330B. Masterpieces of French Literature.
This course will study principally the most accomplished genre of the French literature, the novel. We will analyze the major representative novels from the 17th century to the present, and we will attempt to study their access to canonicity. We will also evaluate their continued interest by focusing on the major contemporary interpretations that they have provoked. Readings in Mme de la Fayette, Laclos, Stendhal, Flaubert, Genet, and Duras.
FREN 1330C. French Women Writers.
This class analyzes the relationship between gender and literary genre through the study of texts authored by women from the 19th through the 21st century. We will read novels and poetry by George Sand, Desbordes-Valmore, Colette, Beauvoir, Marguerite Duras, Monique Wittig, Annie Ernaux, among others. Screenings of work by women filmmakers will complement readings. Course taught in English. WRIT.
FREN 1410A. Des monstres et de l' anormal.
What are monsters and why do they fascinate us so much? How and why have representations of "abnormal" creatures changed over time? We will examine these questions through literary, philosophical, and scientific texts from the 16th century to the present. In addition to films, iconography, and criticism, readings will include: Montaigne, Paré; Perrault, d'Aulnoy; Mendès, Lorrain; Bataille, Foucault, Darrieussecq.
FREN 1410B. Fins de siècles, débuts de millénaires.
We will compare the 19th and 20th century fins de siècles with the one available fin de millénaire-what people called in France l'an Mil-and explore some of the perspectives for the 21st century, as debated in France nowadays. Readings from history, literature, anthropology, sociology, and philosophy combined with explorations of contemporary art, media, film, and press.
FREN 1410C. La culture franco-américaine en Nouvelle Angleterre.
After a period of general training, students choose a specific topic and present partial results of their research for the course on a weekly basis. Projects include collecting oral history in Woonsocket, research on/in Franco-American institutions from Woonsocket (Mallet Library, American-French Genealogical Society, Union Saint-Jean Baptiste, Les Dames Richelieu du Rhode Island), studies on Franco-American history, onomastics, literature, press, and film.
FREN 1410D. L'identité française.
We discuss different ways of defining French identity across centuries by stressing catholicism, le génie de la langue française, Cartesianism, French Revolution, les droits de l'homme, the French Presidency, Francophonie, and l'exception française, or, in a minor key, l'esprit gaulois, French cuisine, French chanson, cafés philosophiques, and French film.
FREN 1410E. Lire et voir la Revolution française.
Drawing from a wide variety of materials (novels, plays, speeches, pamphlets, caricatures, documentaries, films), this course will analyze the ways in which the Revolution attempted to represent itself and ways in which it has been represented. We will focus on the evolution of the images of the Revolution from the time of the Declaration of the Rights of Man to the Terror. We will read commentaries by prominent cultural historians such as Furet, Hunt, and Baker, but also Chartier and De Baecque.
FREN 1410F. Comment peut-on être Français? L'identité française en question.
This course will examine the transformation of cultural identity in contemporary France. What does it mean to be "French" or étranger today? We will investigate this question by reflecting on some of the major changes that have occurred in French society in the past 30 years in the wake of immigration, the emergence of ethnic identity, racism, the construction of Europe, and globalization. We will study contemporary fiction and non-fiction, essays, films, songs, comedy, as well as theoretical texts. Readings will include works by Leïla Sebbar, Chadhort Djavann, Faïza Guène, Julie Kristeva, Tzvetan Todorov, Philippe d'Iribarne, and Eric Fassin. In French.
FREN 1410G. Paris, Capitale du dix-neuvieme siècle.
History, politics, revolution, urban planning, architecture, literature and the arts, and critical theory, with emphasis on Napoléon III, Haussman, Karl Marx, Adolphe Thiers, Balzac, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Rimbaud, Zola, Delacroix, Daumier, Courbet, the Impressionists, and the criticism, of W. Benjamin and T. J. Clark.
FREN 1410H. Révoltes et opposition en France.
Why are strikes and protest marches more common in France than in the United States and many other countries? A good part of the answer lies in the traditions of social and political opposition that have existed in France since the Revolution. In this course we will examine how this tradition developed by concentrating on four key historical moments: the Revolutions of 1789-1794, the Commune, the Occupation, and the 1968 uprisings.
FREN 1410I. Sorcellerie et Renaissance: le sort de la sorcière.
An interdisciplinary exploration of witches and witchcraft in Renaissance France based on close analysis of primary texts-confessions from trials, iconography, literary texts, and witchcraft theory. Topics include the trial of Joan of Arc, the science of demons, skepticism, and the nature of belief. Readings in Montaigne, Mauss, among others. Enrollment limited to 20.
FREN 1410J. War, Culture, Politics.
Armed conflict in and involving France, from World War I to the war in Iraq. We will consider the socio-political climates giving rise to armed conflict, as well as the cultural products (journalism, memoirs, film, novels) resulting from the experience of war. Issues include colonialism, nationalism, collaboration, resistance, civil rights, international relations, and the politics of gender in wartime.
FREN 1410K. French Culture and Civilization: La pensée française au XXe siècle.
We will address XXth century French thinkers coming from philosophy, aesthetics, semiotics, sociology, and feminism. Readings include works by Henri Bergson, Simone Weil, Luc Ferry and Alain Badiou; Paul Valéry, Roger Caillois, and Paul Ricoeur, Emile Durkheim, Raymond Aron, and Pierre Bourdieu; Luce Irigaray and Michèle Le Doeuff. Two oral presentations and one final paper.
FREN 1410L. La faveur et l’infamie: Being Marie Antoinette.
This course will examine the life of the last queen of France, Marie Antoinette, through a variety of materials: memoirs, pamphlets, and films. We will follow her from her arrival at Versailles to the fires of the Revolution, her trial and her demise. We will read some of the critical literature that has dealt with her legacy in the historiography (Hunt, Thomas, Weber), the fiction (Ch. Thomas) and art history (Mary Sheriff). Taught in French.
FREN 1410M. Liens communautaires et culturels au Moyen Age.
Study of writings and art forms that shed light on the world views, modes of belief, social attitudes, cross-ethnic relations, and collective yearnings that shaped and animated several French-speaking cultures from 1100 to 1500. We will also look at some modern legacies of medieval art works and legends.
FREN 1410N. Présence française en Amérique du Nord au XXe siècle.
We will examine varieties of French spoken in Northern America (Acadian French, chiac, joual, creole) as well as the French culture and literature of Québec, New England and Louisiana. Students will choose between fieldwork in a New England francophone community of their choice or writing a solid essay on North-American francophone culture/literature.
FREN 1410O. Nous et les autres: Les Francaís et le monde de la Renaissance à la Révolution.
An exploration of early French encounters with and reactions to non-European cultures from 1500 to 1800. By studying travel narratives, essays, and fictional texts, we will examine the multiple ways that French identity attempts to come to terms with its "Others" during this crucial period of European colonial expansion. Besides secondary texts, readings include travel writings and fictional texts by Cartier, Thevet, Thévenot, Tavernier, Choisy, Molière, Galland, and Montesquieu.
FREN 1410P. Paris et la province : je t'aime, un peu, beaucoup....
This course examines the relationship between Paris and the provinces of France (including Overseas Departments and Territories) from a variety of perspectives and approaches: Geography, History, Politics, Economy, Education, Languages, Arts... Readings include Pinçon + Pinçon-charlot, Duby & Mandrou, Weber, Bruno, Fanon, Favereau, and Queffélec. Films and documentaries will be shown. Taught in French.
FREN 1410Q. Boulevard du Crime.
A study of crime and criminality in relation to French culture and literature during the 19th and 20th centuries. Readings in a variety of fictional and non-fictional sources including short stories, detective fiction, novels, trials, memoirs, and criminological treatises.
FREN 1410R. Images d’une guerre sans nom: the Algerian War in Literature and Film.
Not officially acknowledged as a war by France until recently, the Algerian War of independence remains, more than a half-century later, a contested battleground in the French national consciousness. Focusing on depictions of the Algerian War in literature and film we will investigate the many taboos that still endure, most notably around the question of violence and torture, and attempt to reassess the relative “invisibility” of this conflict. Readings will include films by Gillo Pontecorvo, Jean-Luc Godard, Alain Resnais, Agnès Varda, and works by Frantz Fanon, Jean-Paul Sartre, Albert Camus, Benjamin Stora, Claire Etcherelli, Assia Djebar, and Leïla Sebbar.
FREN 1420B. France at War.
This course treats armed conflict from the Franco-Prussion war to the war in Iraq through readings of essays (Aubrac, Camus), fiction (Maupassant, Duras), press articles, correspondence, and film viewings (Tavernier, Chabrol, Pontecorvo). Topics include: nationalism and patriotism, collaboration, resistance, torture, civil rights, international relations, and the politics of gender in wartime.
FREN 1420C. Gender Theory and Politics in France.
This course explores thought, activism, and public policy in contemporary France pertaining to issues of gender and sexuality. Attention will be paid to intellectual and cultural differences between France and the US, as well as Franco-American exchanges in critical theory related to these domains (e.g. Foucault, Butler). Topics include Beauvoir's legacy and 1970's feminisms (Cixous, Irigaray, Wittig, Delphy); recent public policy debates (representative parity, marriage equality, surrogacy); sexual violence; feminism and multiculturalism (gender and national identity, anti-sexism/anti-racism, French secularism and the headscarf debate). Taught in English. WRIT
FREN 1430. Research Seminar: Franco-American as a New England Minority Culture.
After an intensive week of training, students choose a specific topic of research and work independently during the rest of the course. They meet with the instructor and present partial results of their research in the weekly seminar. Projects include collecting oral history in Woonsocket; research on (and in) Franco-American institutions located in the vicinity; and studies on Franco-American history, onomastics, literature, film, and press. While not required for all of the projects, a basic knowledge of French is strongly recommended. Conducted in English.
FREN 1510A. Advanced Oral and Written French: Traduction.
An introduction to the theory and practice of translation, this course will be designed to expand students' range and appreciation of written styles and registers and will be based on translation exercises and texts reflecting different types of written and oral communication.Texts will range from literary texts (excerpts from novels, plays, comic books...) to journalistic texts (articles from newspapers...). Class activities will also include comparative studies of translated texts, as well as grammar review and vocabulary work. Course taught in French. Written translations to and from French. Prerequisite: FREN 0600 or equivalent. Enrollment limited to 18. Instructor permission required. WRIT
FREN 1510C. Advanced Oral and Written French: A table!.
Thematic units with different approaches to French cuisine and the French meal, such as regional cuisine, meals in literature and at the movies, radio-TV culinary shows, political and economical considerations, and, of course, a practical unit on how to compose, prepare and eat a French meal. Follows FREN 0600 in the sequence of language courses. Development of oral skills via presentations, debates, conversation, and discussion based on the various topics. Writing activities: essays, translations, commentaries, journals, creative descriptions and stories, etc. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 1510D. Advanced Oral and Written French: L’animal Post-Moderne.
This course will focus on depictions of animals in the present day French (and Francophone) public and cultural sphere – in literature, journalism, cinema, advertisements, the visual arts, etc. Through presentations, class discussion and reading and writing assignments (essays, short responses, a journalistic piece, an interview) students will develop their linguistic and critical skills in French while engaging thoughtfully with the course's materials and questions. Follows FREN 600 in the sequence of language courses. Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 1510F. Advanced Written and Oral French: Regards sur la France actuelle.
This course will use contemporary and classic works, newspaper articles, and film – all "made in France" – to explore and analyze the myths, realities, and contradictions of France today. Through in-class discussions, debates, and presentations, students will gain a deeper understanding of the enigma and legacy of this European country that once was the center of the cultural world and an early model of democracy. Follows FREN 0600 in the sequence of language courses. Writing activities, essays, commentaries, journals, etc.. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: FREN 0600. Enrollment limited to 18.
FREN 1510G. Advanced Written and Oral French: La Sociabilité à la Française.
An exploration of French sociability, this course is designed to expand students’ oral skills through discussions and presentations, as well as to help them develop their writing skills via essays, creative projects, blog entries, and use of Twitter. Students will experience the different modes of sociability through a variety of texts (novel excerpts, comic books, newspaper articles) and films, ranging from 17th-century fairytales to contemporary thinkers (Sartre, Bergson), and will be invited to reflect on their own practice of social networks through essays and debates. Taught in French.
Prerequisite: FREN 0600 or equivalent. Enrollment limited to 18. Instructor permission required.
FREN 1510H. A nous deux la mode.
A bird’s eye view of the fashion world, this course will explore the birth and evolution of the French fashion industry (from the development of department stores to the birth and rise of Haute Couture), its impact on society and social change, as well as its relationship with art and advertisement. Materials will range from literary excerpts to journalistic texts, online resources, and films, and will include portraits of fashion designers, studies of iconic fashion pieces, descriptions of techniques and crafts, and analyses of fashion shows. Activities will include presentations, discussion, essays, commentaries, and the creation of a trend book. WRIT
FREN 1510J. Advanced Oral and Written French: Photographie.
Follows FREN 0600 in the sequence of language courses. Development of oral and written skills via presentation, debate, conversation and discussion on a variety of topics. Through novels, articles, photographs and discussions, this course will explore the world of photography from its beginnings until today. Theory and practice; professionals and amateurs; famous people and paparazzi; photo reportage and photo studio; argentic and digital; your own photos, etc. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 1610B. To Be Determined.
No description available.
FREN 1610C. Advanced Written French: Atelier d'écriture.
An advanced course in (functional or creative) writing. The workshops range from practice in interpersonal communication (letters) to essays and various forms of narration. Recommended to students returning from a study-abroad program, students with a native French background who lack formal training in writing, or post-FREN 1510 students. Exercises for each workshop plus a final writing project. Prerequisite: FREN 1510. Enrollment limited to 15. Instructor permission required. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 1710A. France-Afrique/Afrique-France: Je t'aime moi non plus.
Historically, the relationship between France and Africa has been characterized by a permanent tension. We will use literature and film to reflect on the historical events and, socio-political processes that have shaped the encounter between France and Africa. How are African and French novelists/filmmakers responding to this relationship? Topics include: the Colonial Encounter, "World War II", Decolonization, Negritude and Immigration.
FREN 1710B. Black, Blanc, Beur.
This course examines how the ethnic make up of contemporary French society challenges its republican ideals of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity. Violent clashes involving teenagers from immigrant descents and the police are recurrent. Anti immigration policies have also become a major component of political discourse. We will use literature; film, newspapers and popular musical forms to reflect on issues such as integration, identity, violence, race and class.
FREN 1710F. Politique, démocratie, et corruption en Afrique francophone.
What do representations of democracy (its promises as well as its shortcomings) and corruption have to tell us about postcolonial and postmillennial politics in contemporary Francophone Sub-Saharan Africa? How have these interrelated problems and discourses been negotiated in French and African literature, film, journalism, and anthropology? This course will address these and related questions in a number of national and historical contexts, paying special attention to the ways in which current events on the continent both complement and complicate our understandings of Francophone African cultural production. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not taken French at Brown. Taught in French.
FREN 1720A. Disenchantment and Melancholia in Postcolonial Africa.
In the decades following independence, African novels and films were characterized by euphoria. This optimism has since been replaced by narratives of hopelessness. Rather than assuming that disenchantment and melancholia lead inevitably to pessimism, we will explore ways in which artistic forms engage the idea of a better future through a careful examination of the predicaments facing the African continent. In English.
FREN 1720B. Foreign Bodies/Forbidden Sexualities in Africa and the Caribbean.
The practice of homosexuality is a crime in several Caribbean and African countries. In Uganda, it is referred as "carnal knowledge of another against nature" while Zimbabwe's president Mugabe claimed homosexuals are "worse than pigs and dogs." We will explore ways in which artistic forms engage the LGBT experience within predominantly heterosexual societies. Topics include: psychoanalysis, Black feminism, Black Queer theory, HIV/AIDS, gender role socialization.
FREN 1720C. Black Paris.
This course is a study of Black Paris, as imagined by three generations of Black cultural producers from the United States, the Caribbean and Africa, who lived in Paris. We will investigate how the representation of Paris functions in the construction of black identities from Joesphine Baker to Shay Youngblood.
FREN 1720E. Melancholia Africana: Loss Mourning and Survival in Africa and the Diaspora.
Traditional beliefs, historical and cultural circumstances construct how the African understands himself/herself in relation to the world. From this construction resonates a theme of loss - loss of land; of freedom; of language; of self. Melancholia Africana incorporates loss but moreover, grapples with the external world. We will explore ways in which literature, film and music portray loss, resilience and survival. DPLL LILE
FREN 1900A. Boulevard du crime.
A study of crime and criminality in relation to French culture and literature from the late-middle ages through the 20th-century. Readings in a variety of sources including poetry (from Villon to Verlaine), theater (Racine), the novel (Zola, Genêt, Duras), trials (Gilles de Rais, the prototype of Bluebeard), memoirs (Lacenaire, dubbed the "elegant murderer"), and criminological treatises. Film screenings will complement readings. Taught in French.
FREN 1900B. Figures de l'étranger dans la littérature française.
From Montaigne to Marguerite Duras, Segalen to Jean Genét, modern French literature has been haunted by a specter: the figure of the Other (the foreigner, the "immigrant", the "bon sauvage", etc.) Various literary and philosophical texts will help us study the historical status and the various forms of these figures in modern French literature. Two short papers.
FREN 1900C. Fin de siècle, début de millénaire.
This course considers some of the French answers to questions such as: How do peoples and cultures envision the end of a century, especially when it coincides with and is magnified by the end of a millennium? and How do they, afterwards, reposition themselves in order to confront the beginnings of a new century and millennium? We analyze and compare the 19th- and 20th-century fins de siècle with the one available fin de millénaire-what people called in France l'An Mil-trying to discover both their similarities and their unavoidable differences. We then explore some of the perspectives for the 21st century, as debated in France nowadays. Readings from literature, history, anthropology, sociology, and philosophy combine with explorations of contemporary art, media, film, and press.
FREN 1900D. L'Utopie littéraire.
For centuries literary utopias have reinvented the world according to Western desires and values. In Europe, utopias have allowed writers to protect their dreams and fantasies on foreign territories. Utopian texts and films will be studied in order to better understand the role utopias have played in shaping the imaginary of generations in France. Novels, essays, films by Campanella, Voltaire, Marivaux, Mercier, Sand, Verne, Boulle, Topor, and others. Enrollment limited to 20.
FREN 1900E. Temps et récit.
Time, memory, and conceptions of the self in narratives from Montaigne to Sarraute. Texts include a variety of genres (fiction and nonfiction): the essay, epistolary and autobiographical writings, the historical novel, and psychoanalytical narratives. Additional readings by Freud, Bollas, Barthes, Genette, Ricoeur, and others provide a framework for inquiry and discussion.
FREN 1900F. Senior Seminar: L'Identité française.
This course examines different ways of defining French identity across centuries by alternately or simultaneously stressing Catholicism, le génie de la langue française, Cartesianism, French Revolution, individualism and les droits de l'homme, France in the European Union, l'exception française, and Francophonie or, in a minor key, l'esprit gaulois, French cuisine, French chanson, cafés philosophiques and French films.
FREN 1900G. French Feminisms.
Analysis of feminist thought, activism, and creative work in France from the middle ages to the present day. Topics include: proto-feminisms, revolution and women's rights, utopian feminism, suffrage, psychoanalysis and other "new French feminisms," reproductive rights, la parité, Islamic and Muslim feminisms. Authors include: Christine de Pisan, Gournay, Poullain de la Barre, Gouges, Sand, Démar, Beauvoir, Irigaray, Wittig, Halimi, Amara.
FREN 1900H. La France en guerre.
This seminar considers the impact of warfare on France and its former colonies. We will study various types of violent conflict (wars of expansion and of independence, European conflicts, the world wars, terrorism) at different historical moments while consulting diverse sources (historical, literary, journalistic, epistolary, filmic). We will also address contemporary events relevant to the subject of this course and follow them as they unfold. Other topics include:war and collective memory, virility and violence, extreme situations and crises of representation, resistance and collaboration, colonization and nationhood, jihadism. Prerequisite: a course at the 600- or 700-level or equivalent proficiency. Contact the instructor to verify your proficiency if you have not take French at Brown. Taught in French. WRIT
FREN 1970. Individual Independent Study.
Section numbers vary by instructor. Please check Banner for the correct section number and CRN to use when registering for this course. Instructor permission required.
FREN 1990. Senior Thesis.
Independent study in an area of special interest to the student, with close guidance of a member of the staff, and leading to a major paper. Required of candidates for honors, and recommended for all senior concentrators. Section numbers vary by instructor. Please check Banner for the correct section number and CRN to use when registering for this course.
FREN 2030. Quêtes et dépaysements, 1100-1400.
How medieval authors treated cross-cultural encounters. How they interpreted contacts with other societies or worlds -- with an eye to helping their patrons politically, influencing their audiences, and pleasing them all. Texts from several vernaculars: early French, Anglo-Norman, Franco-Venetian, Occitan. Works by troubadours, Chrétien de Troyes, Marie de France, Jean Bodel, Villehardouin, Marco Polo and Froissart, among others.
FREN 2040A. Chroniqueurs du Moyen Age.
Why and how did medieval French chroniclers narrate the events of their age? Political positions, evolving cultural outlooks, and conceptions of history in Villehardouin, La canso de la crozada, Joinville, Froissart, Le journal d'un bourgeois de Paris, and Commynes. Subsequent reception history of these texts; their role in modern nationalism and regionalism.
FREN 2040B. Féminin/masculin et textualité médiévale.
Examines gender theory in medieval texts and their cultures and how gender roles were defined and represented in several important literary genres from the 12th to the 15th century. Readings of major early French texts plus contemporary scholarship concerning gender construction and medieval textuality.
FREN 2040C. Le roman médiéval: poétique du récit.
Focus on works that illustrate the development of verse and prose fiction from the twelfth to the fifteenth century. Issues of narrative aesthetics and ideology will be examined from several theoretical perspectives: rhetorical, socio-political, structuralist, psychoanalytic, deconstructive, and new historicist.
FREN 2040D. Arts du récit, 1100-1400.
Readings and interpretations of major texts that illustrate the development of verse and prose narrative in French medieval literature, from the Chanson de Roland and early Arthurian romances to Froissart's Chroniques. Emphasis on relating questions of narrative aesthetics to important frames of political, social and cultural history.
FREN 2110A. La Naissance du roman Français.
From the origins of medieval romance in the 12th century, this course traces the history of the genre through the end of the sixteenth century. What was the fate of the knight errant in the modern era and how did the invention of printing transform medieval romance cycles? Did the humanist novel offer a corrective to the vagaries of chivalric romance? Literary works will be read in light of theories of the novel. Readings in Chrétien de Troyes, the prose Lancelot, Rabelais, Bakhtin, Lukács, and others. Taught in French.
FREN 2110B. Pratiques de l'aveu.
This course examines Renaissance literature in light of confessional practices in early modern France, focusing on notions of secrecy, sexuality, and guilt as well as on knowledge and the self. The primary corpus includes not only literary texts, but also confessor's manuals, judicial handbooks, and confessions from witch trials. Readings in Foucault, Labé, Montaigne, Marguerite de Navarre, among others.
FREN 2110C. Rhétorique et polémique à la Renaissance.
An exploration of the performative modes of literature in light of the Renaissance's rhetorical tradition. Examines the text in a variety of rhetorical situations from poetic seduction, to the courtier's pursuit of royal favor, to the Religious Wars. Also engages contemporary theories of discourse while confronting early modern rhetorical theory with contemporary speech act theory (Austin and others). Writers include les grands rhétoriqueurs, Labé Montaigne, Du Bellay, Ronsard, pseudo-Longinus.
FREN 2110D. Humanisme et Renaissance (humain, inhumain, non-humain).
Erasmus famously wrote: "one is not born human, one becomes human." For Renaissance humanists, how does one become human, and what role do the "Humanities" play in this process? This course explores Renaissance understandings of the "human" as well as its antitheses, the inhuman, non-human, and animal. Readings include Rabelais, Marguerite de Navarre, Du Bellay, Montaigne, and La Boétie.
FREN 2110E. "Sorcellerie et Renaissance".
Drawing on literary studies, history, and anthropology, this course explores witchcraft from the Late Middle Ages through the Renaissance. What cultrual dynamic produced the figure of the witch, caught up in the interplay of power and knowledge? Close readings of works by demonologists and their critics offer a lens for examining the making of witchcraft theory as well as its eventual demise. Other topics include the imagination and dreams, violence and the sacred. Special attention will be paid to the methodological challenges facing the scholar of early modern literary studies. Readings in Montaigne, Rabelais, Ronsard, Foucault, and Mauss, among others.
FREN 2110G. Savoirs et non-savoirs de la Renaissance.
How were the lines between the known, the unknown, and the unknowable drawn for the Renaissance? This course examines the period's "will to know" underlying humanism, Natural Philosophy, and demonology (the "science of demons"). It also tracks challenges to positive knowledge through madness and the rediscovery of Greek scepticism. Readings in Erasmus, Marguerite de Navarre, Rabelais, Montaigne, and Foucault, among others.
FREN 2130A. Civilité et subjectivité au XVIIème siècle.
This course explores the effect of civilité on subjectivity in 17th-century France. After considering pertinent theories of subjectivity, we examine how civility links the sense of "distinction" to disgust and, more precisely, the "abject," and how this linkage changes over the course of the century under the influence of political, economic, and aesthetic forces. We pay particular attention to the ways civility constructs language, the body, sexuality, gender, and class.
FREN 2130B. Civilité, littérature, et différences sexuelles.
How did "politeness" shape gender identities in 17th-century France? What role didla civilitéplay in the period's conceptions of the body, sexuality, and relations between the sexes? How did literature both implement and contest the norms of civility? These questions are explored by examining conduct literature, salons and the art of conversation, "galant" poetry, male melancholy, and female cross-dressing.
FREN 2130C. Fictions du masculin.
The aesthetics and politics of masculine identities in seventeenth- century France. Both literary representations and case studies of historical figures are considered. Topics include: the picaresque hero, male melancholy, effeminacy, salons and women's cultural authority, sodomy, the king's body. In addition to critical readings in gender theory and cultural studies, texts by Sorel, Molière, Lafayette; iconography; satirical literature.
FREN 2130D. Studies in French Literature of the Seventeenth Century: Les Modernités du XVIIe siècle.
By examining how recent thinkers have used the period to (re)define "classicism," "modernity," "modernism," or the "post-modern" and confronting these interpretations with selected 17th-century texts, we will explore the crucial role the century plays in French cultural, literary and theoretical debates. Readings include Barthes, Bourdieu, Derrida, Foucault and Descartes, Cyrano de Bergerac, Pascal, La Rochefoucauld, Racine, La Bruyère, and Perrault.
FREN 2130E. Corps et esprits libertins.
Throughout the 17th century, writers flouted religious, philosophical, political, sexual, and social norms/dogmas, provoking debate, censorship, and even persecution. This seminar will explore the themes and contexts of libertine thought and practice, as well as the attacks it occasioned in both philosophy and literature. We will study debates about skepticism, Epicureanism, sexual freedom, religious and political dissent, and will read, among others, Montaigne, Charron, Viau, Garasse, Gassendi, Cyrano de Bergerac, La Mothe Le Vayer, Ninon de L'Enclos, Pascal, Molière, La Fontaine, Saint-Evremond, and Deshoulières.
FREN 2130F. Façons d'aimer: Discourses of Sexuality in Early Modern France.
This course will examine both the connections and tensions among the legal, literary, philosophical, medical, and religious discourses of sexuality in early modern France. Topics such as Neoplatonism, erotomania, one-gender theory, conjugal love, cuckoldry, impotence, sodomy, and tribadism will be studied in their historical, social, and literary contexts. In addition to primary sources (selections from edicts, essays, treatises) and secondary readings (theoretical and critical), literary texts by Rabelais, Ronsard, Labé, Montaigne, Viau, Molière, Choisy, among many others. Class discussions in English or French, depending on preparation of students. Enrollment limited to graduate students or advanced undergraduates (with instructor’s permission only).
FREN 2150A. Bodies of Enlightenment.
An exploration of the body in the eighteenth-century in its multiple guises: foreign and national; disciplined and idle; natural and mechanical; libertine and political. Readings in Prévost, Diderot, Rousseau, Boyer d'Argens, Sade. Critical essays by: Michel Foucault, Lynn Hunt, David Cottom, Dorinda Outram.
FREN 2150B. Foucault et les Lumières.
An examination of Foucault's key writings on the French Enlightenment and the confrontation of his criticism with the major works of that period. We will consider how other French theoreticians differ with Foucault in examining the Enlightenment, particularly Lyotard and Ferry. Readings in Histoire de la folie, Les Mots el les choses, Surveiller et Punir and Histoire de la sexualité and texts by Prévost, Rousseau, Diderot, Sade and others. Open to qualified undergraduates.
FREN 2150C. Le Roman libertin: approches critiques.
We will attempt to study the evolution of the different genres of the libertine novel in the 18th century: roman de séduction, the conte, roman de la prostituée. We will also examine how current approaches around issues of gender, sexuality, pornography allow for new contextualization of that novel. Authors to be read are Crébillon fils, Duclos, Godard d'Aucour, La Morliére, Boyer d'Argens, Denon and Laclos. Taught in French.
FREN 2150D. Qu'est-ce que les Lumières?.
A critical examination of the authors of the French Enlightenment from the point of view of the capital ideas that will forge the century: notions of universalism and otherness, notions of politics (such as reason and violence), notions of gender and race. Examines the critical reception of the Enlightenment by contemporary theorists and historians, principally Foucault, Hunt and Darnton. Readings in Graffigny, Boyer d’Argens, Diderot, Rousseau, and Sade.
FREN 2170A. Courants poétiques du XIX siècle, Romantisme, Modernisme, Symbolisme.
Special attention to Hugo, Baudelaire, Rimbaud, and Mallarmé.
FREN 2170B. Crimes écrits.
This course focuses on fictional crime, literary criminals, and criminalized literature in 19th-century France. Topics include the romantic murderer, popular literature, the aesthetics of evil, literary trials of the Second Empire, naturalism and legal transgression. Authors to be studied include Balzac, Lacenaire, Sue, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Barbey d'Aurévilly, Zola, Maupassant, Foucault.
FREN 2170C. Sexualités décadentes.
A study of fin-de-siècle literature and ideology. Topics include: degeneration and the new sciences of sexology and criminology; representations of homosexuality, prostitution, and the femme fatale; and masculinity in crisis. Texts by Huysmans, Nordau, Rachilde, Zola, Lorrain, Verlaine, Krafft-Ebing, Lombroso. Secondary sources in literary criticism and contemporary theories of sexuality.
FREN 2170D. Lyrisme et différence sexuelle.
Seminar exploring the relationship between gender and the lyric, often deemed a "masculine" genre. We will read male and female poets of the 19th century (including Desbordes-Valmore, Hugo, Baudelaire, Verlaine, Rimbaud, and Vivien) and examine the gendering of the poem on various levels. Topics include the construction of masculine poetic identity, the possibility of a female lyric voice, homosexual traditions, gender and form.
FREN 2170E. Paris, capitale du dix-neuvième siècle.
History, politics, revolution, urban planning, architecture, literature and the arts, and critical theory, with emphasis on Napoléon III, Haussmann, Karl Marx, Adolphe Thiers, Balzac, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Rimbaud, Zola, Delacroix, Daumier, Courbet, the Impressionists, and the criticism of W. Benjamin and T.J. Clark.
FREN 2170F. Baudelaire et Rimbaud, poète du XIXe siècle et du nôtre.
In-depth study of two major poets of the European 19th century whose work remains especially pertinent today.
FREN 2170G. Decadence.
Study of the notion of decadence in fin-de-siècle French culture. From scientific theories of degeneration to literary representations of sexual perversion, writers of the period were consumed by the specter of moral decay and social disease. This course will analyze fictional and non-fictional texts of the period by authors such as Péladan, Lorrain, Rachilde, Mendès, and Nordau.
FREN 2170H. Baudelaire, Rimbaud et Mallarme.
No description available.
FREN 2170I. Naturalisme et positivisme.
This seminar studies the naturalist literary "method" and its ideological implications in relation to 19th -century positivist thought and the disciplines it informed. Topics include scientism, anit-clericalism, republicanism, gender and social reform, and the birth of sociology. In addition to several novels from Zola's cycle, Les Rougon-Macquart: Histoire naturelle et sociale d'une famille sous le Second Empire, primary sources include texts by Maupassant, Comte, Taine, Littré, Durkheim. Secondary readings in the sociology of literature and cultural history.
FREN 2170J. Naturalisme et décadence.
In this seminar we will read seminal works associated with these two nineteenth-century literary tendencies. We will explore the antithetical nature of their aesthetic programs and the ideological implications of their differences. Moving beyond the literary text, we will consider corresponding cleavages that divided France along similar lines between the old guard (Catholic monarchists) and the new (republican secularists), between science and the Church, between Dreyfusards and anti-Drefusards, among other conflicting viewpoints that polarized France at the end of the century. Works by Zola, Maupassant, Huysmans, Lorrain, Péladan, Mendès.
FREN 2170L. La Terre.
This seminar explores representations of the agrarian, natural, material world, and the cultural politics at play in relation to region, terroir, and identity, during a rapidly modernizing period. Changing regimes and demographics, industrialization, and new modes of communication and transportation contributed to altering the rural landscape, its inhabitants, and its occupations. This seminar coincides with the annual Nineteenth-Century French Studies colloquium, La Terre, which comes to Brown in October 2016. Students will be asked to attend the conference and encouraged to participate in its organization. Authors studied include Balzac, Sand, Maupassant, Zola, Bazin, Barrès. Taught in French.
FREN 2190C. Littératures Francophones Contemporaines. Nations d'écrivains.
Does a writer belong to a "Nation"? To which nation does a writer belong when he or she writes in the language of his or her former colonizer? Does political independence warrant the existence of a new nation? How does literature contribute to the emergence and consolidation of a new nation? How does Francophone literature relate to French literature? Readings of major contemporary Francophone writers.
FREN 2190E. Le sujet en procès.
An engagement with 20th century literature and critical theory through a series of perspectives on the subject, including the narrative, the lyrical, the historical, the feminine, the specular. Reading fiction and poetry (Michaux, Beckett, Ponge, Simon, Djebar) alongside key theoretical writings (Deleuze, Derrida, Benveniste, Kristeva), we will consider some of the trials/processes (procès) that have marked the fate of the modern subject.
FREN 2190F. L'Honneur des poètes.
This course will focus on 20th century narrative attempts to give form to war, as historical and traumatic event and scene of a protagonism/narrativity in crisis. Starting with the paradigmatic battlefields of Stendhal’s La Chartreuse de Parme and Céline’s Voyage au bout de la nuit, we will then consider major post-1945 novels (and films) dealing notably with the second world war and the Vichy years (Perec, Simon, Duras, Resnais, Modiano, Littel, Jenni, Echenoz), along with theoretical writings on war, representation and the military-industrialized present (Baudrillard, Virilio, Chamayou, Scarry, Butler). Taught in French.
FREN 2190I. Littérature et écologie.
Recent humanist thinking on nature and environment – including materialist ecocriticism, posthumanist theory, geocriticism, animal studies and deep ecology perspectives as brought to the study of literature – has drawn and continues to draw richly from French/Francophone literature and theory. Reading contemporary “ecopoetic” writings (Rolin, Darrieussecq, Chevillard, Chamoiseau, Redonnet, Boyer) alongside key texts of critical theory and philosophy (Deleuze, Derrida, Latour, Bailly, Stengers, Despret, Westphal), we will consider what insights they offer for thinking human life ecologically, even as we face the verdicts of destroyed environments, climate change, and species’ vanishing.
FREN 2450. Exchange Scholar Program.
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FREN 2600A. À quoi pense la littérature?.
In this seminar we will study the relationship between literature and philosophy to clarify the following questions: What kind of relationship does literature have with philosophical discourse? Does literature produce any philosophical knowledge? What kind of thought is produced in literary texts? This course will draw on works borrowed from French and Francophone literary fiction and modern philosophy. One exposé, a mid-term and a final paper.
FREN 2600B. Gender and Sexuality in Contemporary France.
Critical theory in France focusing on changes in the last decade in approaches to feminism, gender and sexuality. Topics include 1970s feminisms (Cixous, Irigaray); history of sexuality (Foucault); contemporary political debates such as le Pacs and la parité (Agasinksi, Fraisse, Borrillo, Halimi); masculine domination (Bourdieu); gay and lesbian studies (Eribon, Bourcier).
FREN 2600C. Théories de la littérature.
Theory is perhaps the most over-used term in philosophy, in literature, and in the so-called Social Sciences. The main goal of this seminar is to draw a map of the theoretical landscape which has affected the study and the teaching of modern French and Francophone literature during the past fifty years.
FREN 2600D. Théories du texte.
Examines the major theoretical approaches to the notion of text in literature and cinema. Compares the works of literary critics (Barthes, Starobinski) to those of philosophers and film theorists (such as Deleuze, Derrida, Ropars-Wuilleumier). Significant literary works and films by Blanchot, Duras, Beckett, Godard, and Robbe-Grillet are put to the task.
FREN 2600E. Littérature et philosophie mêlées.
What kind of relationship does literature have with philosophy? Does literature produce any kind of knowledge? What kind of thought is produced in literary texts? This course will draw on a series of works borrowed from the realms of literary theory and philosophy written by Hugo, Sartre, Le Doeuf, Macherey, Ricoeur, Barthes, Badiou, Deleuze, and others. An oral presentation, one mid-term, and one final paper.
FREN 2600F. French Feminisms meet Queer Theory.
Feminist and GLBTQ thought and activism in contemporary France, their conflicts and compatibilities, and their exchanges with American critical theory. Topics include Beauvoir's legacy and 1970's feminisms (Cixous, Irigaray, Wittig); Foucault on the history of sexuality; Bourdieu on masculine domination; recent public policy debates (le PaCS and la parité); the impact of US queer theory on GLBTQ studies in France.
FREN 2600J. Modernity, Contemporaneity, Futurity.
How do theorists and writers designate, periodize, and politicize the “now” as an object of critical reflection? What are the philosophical and historical antecedents of current pressures to define the contemporary, and how does this critical urgency generate anxiety about the “future” as an analytic category? Our course will examine the francophone world and global contexts, studying certain key concepts and periodizing impulses (modernism, post-modernism, the anthropocene, sovereignty, futurity, neoliberalism/globalization) in order to make theoretical interventions in debates on the contemporary and its historicity. Readings from Mbembe, Jameson, Benjamin, Césaire, Žižek, and others. Taught in English.
FREN 2600Z. Cinema and Deconstruction.
Though there are only a few texts by Jacques Derrida on cinema, his thought allows us to grasp the contemporary regime of cinematic images. Reading Derrida and other authors with whom he has been in dialogue, we will use such philosophical concepts as auto-immunity or spectrality in order to analyze various filmic texts and contexts. How do images circulate, how do they contaminate each other? How can we understand the dissemination and connectedness of screens? Is it possible for a film to testify or be a witness? These are some of the questions we will approach from a deconstructive perspective.
FREN 2610A. Discours amoureux.
Confrontation of literary, philosophical, and psychoanalytical discourses on love in the 20th century. Authors discussed include Claudel, Proust, Bataille, Gracq, Duras, and Sarraute. Secondary readings from Foucault, Derrida, Barthes, Irigaray, Levinas, and Kristeva.
FREN 2610C. Le rècit post-moderne.
'Postmodernism' is a word much used and misused in a variety of disciplines, including literature, visual arts, film, architecture, literary theory, history, and philosophy. Drawing from the theoretical work of essayists such as Baudelaire, Jean-Francois Lyotard, Antoine Compagnon, Roland Barthes, and Linda Hutcheon, this course will attempt to analyze defining characteristics of postmodern thought--storytelling, autobiography, anecdote, localism, etc.--in the works of major contemporary French and Francophone writers of fiction.
FREN 2610D. Théories de l'action communicative et de l'intersubjectivité.
Approaches communicative action from the perspectives of literary criticism, pragmatics, political philosophy, feminist criticism etc. and examines the interplay between speech and silence, politeness and directness, reciprocity and domination etc. Authors include Benveniste, Barthes, Kristeva, Merleau-Ponty, Irigaray, Bourdieu, Molière, Balzac, and Duras. Open to qualified undergraduates.
FREN 2610E. Littérature française et cinéma.
This course considers the relationship between cinema and literature from the perspective of adaptation. The passage from writing to screen is most often discussed in terms of fidelity of a film to an original literary work. The study of texts and films will allow us to analyze the theoretical, stylistic, and ideological stakes of adaptation. We will propose a typology in three parts: the desire for fidelity of images to text; creative interpretation and adaptation; the limits, even impossibility, of adaptation. Enrollment limited to 40.
FREN 2620A. Collège de sociologie.
We will examine the legacy of the postsurrealist, pre-World War II Collège de Sociologie (active during the critical years 1937-39) and the ways in which it tried to answer Goethe's old question, "What unites men?", by means of developing a "sacred sociology." Readings will combine texts by Roger Caillois, Georges Bataille, Michel Leiris, Jean Paulhan, Pierre Klossowski, Denis de Rougemont, and others with pre-Collège sociological texts by Durkheim, Mauss, and Granet and literary texts by Sarraute, Duras, and Sollers that bear the trace of the Collège debates. Discussion will evolve around the oppositions between architecture and literature; festival and vacation; virility and femininity; attraction and repulsion; presacred, sacred and postsacred societies; directors of conscience and directors of unconsciousness; etc., and the significance of those oppositions for our current debates on gender and postmodernist culture.
FREN 2620B. Groupes littéraires et esthétiques communautaires au XXe siècle.
Examines avant-garde groups and movements, including surrealism, Collège de Sociologie, Oulipo, existentialism, Tel Quel, situationnisme, Théâtre du Soleil, politique et. psychanalyse, and Féministes révolutionnaires. Attempts to assess their aesthetic and political platforms to evaluate their performative strategies. Readings include (poetic) manifestos, novels, plays, and essays by Breton, Bataille, Sartre, Lacan, Barthes, Derrida, Kristeva, Cixous, Wittig, and Irigaray.
FREN 2620C. Théories de la Production Textuelle et de l'intersubjectivité.
Approaches textual production from the perspectives of literary pragmatics, political philosophy, or feminist criticism and examines the interplay between speech and silence, politeness and directness, reciprocity and domination, etc. Authors include Austin, Wittgenstein, Benveniste, Barthes, Kristeva, Merleau-Ponty, Ducrot, Irigaray, Bourdieu, Moliére, Balzac, and Duras.
FREN 2620D. La pensée française au XXe siècle.
We will address XXth century French thinkers coming from philosophy, aesthetics, semiotics, sociology, and feminism. Readings include works by Henri Bergson, Simone Weil, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Luc Ferry and Alain Badiou; Paul Valéry, Roger Caillois, and Paul Ricoeur; Ěmile Durkheim, Raymond Aron, and Pierre Bourdieu; Luce Irigaray and Michèle Le Doeuff. Two oral presentations and one final paper.
FREN 2620E. Discours amoureux.
We will discuss love novels/plays (by Proust, Claudel, Breton, Duras, Sollers, Ernaux, Redonnet) and essays on love by Barthes, De Rougemont, Bataille, Kristeva, Lévinas, Irigaray.
FREN 2620F. France-Afrique / Afrique-France: Je t'aime moi non plus.
Historically, the relationship between France and Africa has been characterized by a permanent tension. We will use literature to reflect on the historical events and, socio-political processes that have shaped the encounter between France and Africa. Topics include: the Colonial Encounter, "World War II", Decolonization, Negritude and Immigration.
FREN 2620G. Writing the Postcolonial Today: New Politics of Form.
Close reading of selected texts by major Francophone writers. Attention to postcolonial criticism, politics of form and role of intellectual. Focus on re-appropriation of history, writing of violence, migration.
FREN 2620H. The Francophone Routes of Postcolonial Thought.
One of the more striking omissions from the founding theoretical work of postcolonial studies, The Empire writes Back (1989), is Francophone writing in general and the Francophone Caribbean in particular. Nevertheless, the Francophone Caribbean maintains a shadowy yet powerful presence in postcolonial thought. The course sets out both to resituate francophone writing in the blindspots of postcolonial theory and to explore the way in which a postcolonial approach liberates writing in French from what some see a the neocolonial label of francophonie.
FREN 2900. Theory and Methods of Foreign Language Teaching.
Introduction to the theoretical and practical aspects of foreign language learning and teaching. Specific topics include theories of language acquisition, an overview of teaching practices and the principles underlying them, selection and evaluation of textbooks, teaching materials, and learner variables. Students observe beginning language courses and do micro-teaching. Taught in English. Undergraduates may enroll with instructor's permission.
FREN 2970. Preliminary Examination Preparation.
For graduate students who have completed their course work and are preparing for a preliminary examination.
|Fall||FREN2970||S01||14733||Arranged||'To Be Arranged'|
|Spr||FREN2970||S01||23827||Arranged||'To Be Arranged'|
FREN 2980. Reading and Research.
Work with individual students in connection with special readings, problems of research, or preparation of theses. Section numbers vary by instructor. Please check Banner for the correct section number and CRN to use when registering for this course.
FREN 2990. Thesis Preparation.
For graduate students who have met the tuition requirement and are paying the registration fee to continue active enrollment while preparing a thesis.
|Fall||FREN2990||S01||14734||Arranged||'To Be Arranged'|
|Spr||FREN2990||S01||23828||Arranged||'To Be Arranged'|
FREN XLIST. Courses of Interest to French Concentrators.
|The following courses may be of interest to French concentrators. Please see the sponsoring department for the time and location of each course.
HIST 1272D The French Revolution
Lewis C. Seifert
University Professor Emeritus of French Studies and Comparative Literature
Michel-Andre R. Bossy
Professor Emeritus of French Studies
Laura Green Durand
Professor Emerita of French Studies
Sanda A. Golopentia
Professor Emerita of French Studies
Virginia A. Krause
Professor of French Studies
Henry F. Majewski
Professor Emeritus of French Studies
Professor of French Studies and Comparative Literature
Professor of French Studies
Lewis C. Seifert
Professor of French Studies
David R. Wills
Professor of French Studies
Inge Crosman Wimmers
Professor Emerita of French Studies
Associate Professor of French Studies
Assistant Professor of French Studies
Visiting Assistant Professor
Maan Al Sahoui
Visiting Assistant Professor of French Studies
Youenn Yves J. Kervennic
Senior Lecturer in French Studies
Stephanie A. Ravillon
Senior Lecturer in French Studies
Annie J. Wiart
Senior Lecturer in French Studies
French and Francophone Studies
The concentration in French and Francophone Studies is committed to the pursuit of an interdisciplinary, linguistically rigorous, and textually informed understanding of French and Francophone literatures and cultures. Concentrators engage actively through their coursework with a wide range of texts and critical perspectives, pertaining to multiple literary genres, media, and contexts. They have opportunities to study different periods of French history as well as Francophone cultures beyond France. By the time they graduate, concentrators will have learned to read with knowledge and nuance and produced a varied body of critical work in French.
The concentration in French and Francophone Studies is committed to the interdisciplinary and textually informed study of the language, literature, and cultural and critical traditions of the French-speaking world. Concentrators engage actively through their coursework with a wide range of texts and critical perspectives, pertaining to multiple literary genres and media (the novel; theater; poetry; cinema; special topics in contemporary politics and culture). They have opportunities to study different periods of French literature and intellectual history (from the Renaissance to the present) as well as Francophone cultures beyond France (West Africa, the Maghreb and the Caribbean). Courses cover a wide diversity of topics, while placing a shared emphasis on language-specific study, critical writing skills, and the vital place of literature and art for intellectual inquiry.
The concentration program is designed to encourage and support language-specific study. Literary texts and cultural documents are read principally in the original. Likewise, in most courses, French is the language of class discussions, presentations and research/critical papers. All French Studies courses are designated writing-intensive (WRIT).
Concentrators in French and Francophone Studies are strongly encouraged to spend one or two semesters (usually in their junior year) in France or in a Francophone country to derive the richest benefits of linguistic and cultural immersion. Information on Brown in France and approved alternative programs in French-speaking countries is available from the Office of International Programs office and the OIP website. Other summer programs can be found on the French Embassy website.
Students who have performed outstandingly in their concentration courses, have completed at least six concentration courses by the first semester of their senior year, and are highly recommended by two professors are eligible to apply for admission to the Honors program.
A minimum of 10 courses is required for the concentration in French and Francophone Studies. Concentrators must observe following guidelines when planning their concentration. It is recommended that course choices for each semester be discussed with the department’s concentration advisor.
Note: A maximum of four courses from study in France or a Francophone country may count toward the concentration, from either a single semester or an entire year. A year or semester of study abroad in France or a Francophone country is considered an integral part of the concentration and is therefore highly recommended. Our concentrators are strongly encouraged to spend one or two semesters (usually in their junior year) in France or in a Francophone country to derive the richest benefits of linguistic and cultural immersion. Through the Brown-in-France program (http://brown.edu/academics/french-studies/undergraduate/brown-france-program), administered by OIP and departmental faculty, students can enroll directly in French institutions.
|Writing and Speaking French II (is accepted for concentration credit)|
|One (and no more than two) of the following 0720,0750,0760 series gateway courses:||1|
|De l'Amour courtois au désir postmoderne|
|The French Novel Today|
|Au carrefour des sciences sociales: introduction à l'interprétation de la fiction littéraire|
|Cinéma et histoire|
|Nous et les autres: les Français et le monde de la Renaissance à la Révolution|
|Lost in Translation: Representations of America by French Writers|
|L'Idée de l'empire dans l'imaginaire français|
|L’animal dans la culture contemporaine|
|Introduction à l'analyse littéraire|
|One of the following:||1|
|Advanced Oral and Written French: Traduction|
|Advanced Written and Oral French: Regards sur la France actuelle|
|Advanced Oral and Written French: A table!|
|Advanced Oral and Written French: Photographie|
|The senior seminar (senior year spring)||1|
|Boulevard du crime|
|La France en guerre|
At least two 1000-level courses offered in the Department of French Studies (excluding FREN 1510 and FREN 1900) are required
Up to two 1000-level courses taught in English offered by French Studies or other departments at Brown are eligible for concentration credit. (Appropriate courses on French or Francophone topics from other departments must be approved by the concentration advisor. Departments in which electives are typically taken include Africana Studies, Anthropology, Art History, Comparative Literature, English, History, Linguistics, Modern Culture and Media)
|At least one course must cover a pre-Revolutionary period 1|
|Littérature et intertextualité: du Moyen-Age jusqu'à la fin du XVIIème s|
|Littérature et culture: Chevaliers, sorcières, philosophes, et poètes|
|L'univers de la Renaissance: XVe et XVIe siècles|
|The French Renaissance: The Birth of Modernity?|
|Civilite et litterature|
|Pouvoirs de la scène: le théâtre du XVIIe siècle|
|Le Grand Siècle à l'écran|
|Molière et son monde|
|"Family Values": Représentations littéraires de la famille au 18eme siècle|
|Fictions de l'individu|
|Le Siècle des Lumières: Culture, Pensée, Société|
|The Age of Voltaire: Culture, Pensée, Société|
|French Lovers: Séduction et libertinage sous l'Ancien Régime|
|Espace public; espace privé|
|Le corps des Lumières|
|The Age of Voltaire: Lumières et modernité|
|Contes et nouvelles du Moyen Age|
|Old French Language and Literature Seminar|
|Hostages and Prisoners of War in Medieval French Literature|
|Histoires et contes du Moyen Age|
|Lire et voir la Revolution française|
|Sorcellerie et Renaissance: le sort de la sorcière|
|Nous et les autres: Les Francaís et le monde de la Renaissance à la Révolution|
|At least one course a post-Revolutionary period 1|
|Le Poétique et le quotidien|
|Gender and the Novel|
|Gender, Sexuality and the Novel|
|Paris: Capital of the 19th Century|
|Boulevard du crime|
|Emergent literature: Postcolonial Nations and Cultural Identity|
|Figures du roman français au XX siècle|
|Le roman français au présent|
|Littérature, appartenance et identité|
|Nations of Writers|
|Writing the Self: Memory, Childhood and the Novel|
|Literature and Social Thought: Le Roman Policier|
|Fairy Tales and Culture|
|French Women Writers|
|Des monstres et de l' anormal|
|La culture franco-américaine en Nouvelle Angleterre|
|Paris et la province : je t'aime, un peu, beaucoup...|
|Comment peut-on être Français? L'identité française en question|
|Images d’une guerre sans nom: the Algerian War in Literature and Film|
|Gender Theory and Politics in France|
|Advanced Written French: Atelier d'écriture|
FREN 1710C - Politics, Democracy, and Corruption in Francophone Africa
Or another appropriate course as agreed to by concentration advisor
Students who have received all "A's" in their concentration courses, have completed at least six concentration courses by the first semester of their senior year, and are highly recommended by two professors are eligible to apply for admission to the honors program. For more information, consult the requirements on the Department’s website: http://www.brown.edu/academics/french-studies/undergraduate/honors-program
The department of French Studies offers graduate programs leading to the Master of Arts (A.M.) degree and the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Degree. Under most circumstances, the A.M. degree is only awarded as part of the Ph.D. track.
For more information on admission and program requirements, please visit the following website: