Course Listing

Fall 2020

Departmental Writing Requirements

The following writing requirements apply to courses in which the authorized enrollments do not exceed 20 (French 3031 and 3032) or 25 (literature and civilization courses beyond French 3032):

FREN 3031 and 3032: 10-15 pages, typically divided among 4 to 5 papers. Peer editing is introduced during class and practiced outside.

3000-level literature and civilization courses: 10-15 pages, typically divided among 2 to 4 papers. The content is relatively less sophisticated than at the 4000-level. Peer editing outside of class may be offered to students as an option or it may be required.

4000-level literature and civilization courses: 15-20 pages, typically divided among 2 to 4 papers. The content is relatively more sophisticated than at the 3000-level. Peer editing outside of class may be offered to students as an option or it may be required.

In all courses, the quality of students' written French (that is, the degree to which their use of grammar and vocabulary is correct and appropriate) affects the grades they receive on their papers, since it affects how comprehensible, persuasive, and impressive their writing is. As students move from 3000- to 4000- level courses, they are expected to show greater sophistication in sentence structure, grammar, and use of idioms. 

Course Descriptions

French Translation Courses

FRTR 3581 – Topics in French Cinema

Description coming

TR      3:30 PM – 4:45 pm (Staff)

CREO 1010-001  – Elementary Creole I

Development of basic oral expression, listening and reading comprehension, and writing.  Pre-requisite: No previous formal instruction of French or Creole is required.

MWF   3:05 pm – 4:05 pm    Dramé

CREO 2010-001  – Intermediate Creole I

Develops the skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing in Creole.

Enrollment Requirement:  Must have completed CREO 1020.

Pre-requisite:  Two previous semesters of Elementary Creole (I and II)

MWF   1:40 pm – 2:40  pm    Dramé

Advanced Courses in French

FREN 3030 – Phonetics: The Sounds of French

FREN 3030 is an introductory course in French phonetics. It provides basic concepts in articulatory phonetics and phonological theory, and offers students techniques for improving their own pronunciation. The course will cover the physical characteristics of individual French sounds; the relationship between these sounds and their written representation (orthography); the rules governing the pronunciation of "standard French"; the most salient phonological features of selected French varieties; phonetic differences between French and English sounds; and to some extent, ‘la musique du français’, i.e., prosodic phenomena (le rythme, l’accent, l’intonation, la syllabation). Practical exercises in 'ear-training' (the perception of sounds) and 'phonetic transcription' (using IPA) are also essential components of this dynamic course.

Pre-requisite: FREN 2020 (or equivalent).  Course taught in French; counts for major/minor credit in French and Linguistics

TR       11:00 am  - 12:15 pm (Saunders)
TR         2:00 pm  –  3:15 pm  (Saunders

FREN 3031 – Finding Your Voice in French

This course offers an opportunity for students to explore and develop their own “voice” in written and spoken French. Through reading and viewing a variety of cultural artifacts in French, and completing a series of individual and collaborative creative projects, students will have a chance to develop their own potential for self-expression. They will develop greater confidence in their communicative skills, command of grammar, and ability to revise and edit their own work. The course is conducted entirely in French.

Pre-requisite: Completion of FREN 2020 or 2320; exemption from FREN 2020 by the UVA (F-Cape) Placement Test; a score of 3 on the AP French Language Exam; or a score of at least 660 on the SAT exam. FREN 3031 is a Pre-requisite for all undergraduate French courses at a higher level. FREN 3031 is required for the FREN major and minor.

MWF   10:00 am -10:50 am (Geer)
MWF 11:00 am – 12:15 pm( Staff)
TR       11:00 am – 12:15 pm  (Staff)
TR       12:30 pm – 1:45 pm    (Staff)

FREN 3032 – Image, Text, Culture

In this course, students will discover and engage critically with a broad sampling of French and Francophone cultural production representing a variety of periods, genres, approaches, and media.  Students will learn how to become more sensitive observers of French and Francophone culture, attuned to the nuances of content and form. They will read, watch, write about, and discuss a range of works that may include poetry, painting, prose, music, theater, films, graphic novels, photographs, essays, and historical documents. They will also make significant progress in their oral and written comprehension and communication in French.  The course is conducted entirely in French.

Pre-requisite: French 3031. FREN 3032 is a Pre-requisite for nearly all French undergraduate courses on a higher level.

TR       9:30 am – 10:45 am (Lyons)
TR       2:00 pm –   3:00 pm (Tsien)
MWF   1:00 pm –   1:50 pm (Hall)
TR       3:30 pm –   4:45 pm (Dramé)

FREN 3034 Advanced Oral Expression:  Contemporary Culture in Conversation 

This class will be centered on discussion about contemporary current events and practices in France. Using French online newspapers, magazines, radio, and television, this course will allow students to learn and reflect on issues that are of immediate concern to their francophone contemporaries. Topics to be discussed will be largely based on student-driven interests, but likely topics will include education, family life, business culture, immigration, the arts, and Franco-American relations. In addition to engaged involvement in class discussions, students will be graded based on in-class presentations (individual and group), an audio and/or video contribution to a class web-journal, and a final oral exam. 

(Pre-requisite:  FREN 3031 and either completion of FREN 3032 or concurrent enrollment in FREN 3032).  This course is not intended for students who are native speakers of French or whose secondary education was in French schools.

MW   3:30 pm - 4:45 pm (McGrady)

FREN 3035 Business French

In this course, students will learn general knowledge about the business world in France and the French-speaking world, and specifically concepts on organizational structures, the primary positions within those businesses and major industries. They will also gain experience in business research, will hone their oral and written French for use in a professional-setting, will have a practice job interview, and will learn the practical aspects of living and working in French.

At the end of the semester, students will have the possibility to take the Diplôme de Français des Affaires (B1) for a fee charged by the Chambre de Commerce et de l’Industrie de Paris.

Pre-requisite: FREN 3031 and 3032 

MWF 3:30 pm - 4:45 pm (Staff)

FREN 3036  – Introduction to Translation

Comment dit-on… ? Que veut dire… ? This course will provide a practical and theoretical introduction to methods of translation. We will translate literary and non-literary texts such as news articles, ads, songs, essays, poems, and short stories from French to English and from English to French. Classes will be in the form of workshops as we take on the role of the translator and collaborate on translation projects using different practices and methods of translation, all while undertaking a comparative review of French (and English!) grammar and analyzing various cultural topics.

**Students who have already taken FREN 4035 “Tools and Techniques of Translation” may not enroll in this course.

Pre-requisite: FREN 2020 or FREN 2320 or equivalent placement

MWF   10:00 AM – 10:50 AM (Hall)

FREN 3041 – The French-Speaking World I:  Origins

Globalization.  Love and friendship.  Encounters with other cultures and peoples.  Separation of Church and State.  Bourgeois values.  Law and justice.  Where did these features of modern life come from and—more importantly—what other forms might they have taken or might they still evolve into?  It is said that history is written by the victors, but historical documents—literature, histories, prayer books, etc.—retain the evidence of alternate values as well as hints of (temporarily?) abandoned futures.  Can we escape our preconceptions of the past and uncover, in the documents, different histories?  Histories that offer alternative ways of thinking about modern institutions, assumptions, and inequities and about the stories that give them authority?

Readings in the course will be in modern French translation, with occasional discussions of the original medieval and middle French if students are interested in the history of the language.  We’ll begin with the earliest narrative in French (ca. 880 C.E.) and continue up to about 1600, looking both at classic texts and little-known treasures.  Reading and writing assignments will be appropriate both for students coming directly from FREN 3032 and for more advanced students who want to hone their close reading and analytical/persuasive writing skills in French.

Pre-requisite:  FREN 3032

MWF   11:00  am – 12:15 pm(Ogden)

FREN 3042 – French-Speaking World II

During the Classical Era, Louis XIV built Versailles, France colonized Canada and the Caribbean, philosophers dared to challenge the Catholic Church, and in the end, the Revolution changed France forever. In view of this tumultuous historical background, this course will provide an overview of the writings of this era, from the canonical works of Corneille, Molière, Voltaire, and Diderot to lesser-known but significant works.  We will pay particular attention to the idea of “nature” which radically changed meaning in this period. 

Pre-requisite:  FREN 3032

TR       12:30 pm – 1:45 pm (Lyons)

FREN 3043.001 –The French-Speaking World III: Modernities

Great Books

Rather than focus on any single theme, movement, motif, or overarching problematic, this seminar will examine a few of the most admired and influential novels in the history of modern French literature. Special attention will be paid to the potential uses (and to the ultimate uselessness) of literature. How might reading fiction inform our understanding of the world and our place in it? Texts may include, but are certainly not limited to, Balzac’s tale of a young law student’s drive to make it in the big city in Le Père Goriot; Flaubert’s portrait of the original desperate housewife in Madame Bovary; Robbe-Grillet’s scandalously puzzling La jalousie ; Georges Perec's critique of consumer society in the 1960s (Les Choses); and Jean-Philippe Toussaint's critical, and rather funny tale about TV (La television). We will likely end our semester with an "extremely contemporary" novel, or two, published at some point during the twenty-first century.

Required work to include: active participation in class discussion, weekly ruminations on the readings posted to a forum on Collab, an oral presentation, and two analytical essays. Course conducted entirely in French.

Pre-requisite:  FREN 3032

TR       9:30 AM – 10:45 AM (Blatt)

FREN 4410 – The Enlightenment

The Enlightenment, or Les Lumières, was one of the most important movements in Western intellectual history. Its proponents fought against superstition and a corrupt monarchy with notoriously witty essays and with fictions that seemed, on the surface, to be about sentimentality, sex, or exotic lands. In this course, we will consider how famous philosophes such as Montesquieu, Voltaire, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau brought France into a new era and inadvertently inspired the American and then the French Revolutions. We will examine how their writings treated issues such as: slavery, women's sexuality, blasphemy, the conflict between religion and science, and moral relativism among various countries. We will also focus on strategies used by the authors to hide their provocative ideas from government censors.  

Pre-requisite:  Any course above FREN 3032

TR       3:30 pm – 4:45 pm (Tsien)

FREN 4580 – Advanced Topics in Literature:  The Extreme Contemporary, or What the French are Reading Now 

This course is designed as a survey of contemporary French literature. One might even call it an introduction to what has come to be known as “extremely contemporary” French literature, which is to say books that have been published within the last few years. After an initial consideration of some of the major trends to have emerged on the French literary scene since the turn of the twenty-first century, students will read a selection of texts (fictions, non-fictions, and works that fall somewhere in between) that have been hailed by critics and readers alike. While the course focuses on what kinds of books the French are reading today, we will also consider how they read, how they talk about what they are reading, and how they inform themselves further about what to read next by consulting a number of essential and readily available resources for enthusiasts of contemporary French writing, like magazines, radio programs, websites, blogs, book reviews, and television programs (indeed, the French have a long tradition of producing quality Book TV). Works by writers such as Jean Rolin, Jean Echenoz, Maylis de Kerangal, Vincent Almendros, Gael Faye, Leila Slimani, Adeline Dieudonné, and Michel Houellebecq may find their way onto the syllabus. We will also endeavor to schedule a few opportunities for students to discuss their readings (over skype) with the writers themselves.

Requirements include regular reading and active participation in class discussion, an oral presentation on a particular aspect of the contemporary literary scene, a series of short commentaries and book reviews, and a final paper.

Pre-requisites: FREN 3032 and at least one other course above FREN 3040. Course conducted in French.

TR       11:00 am – 12:15 pm  (Blatt)

FREN 4585.001 The History of Paris

This course will explore the history of Paris from the French Revolution to the present. The principal theater of the Revolution, Paris became over the course of the 19th-century not only the central focus of French intellectual, political, and artistic life, but also the model of a 19th-century European city.

Through a broad variety of written and visual texts, we will study the topography, architecture, politics and daily life of nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first century Paris as well as the development of the imagined city in art and literature. We will also consider how the traces of the past are inscribed on the modern urban landscape.

Pre-requisite: FREN 3032 plus one additional 3000-level course in French. (N.B. Students who have previously taken FREN 3652: Modern Paris may not enroll for FREN credit in this course.)

MW 2:00 pm – 3:15 pm (Horne)

FREN 4585.002 – Adv Topics Cultural Studies:  America and Americans in French Literature and Culture(18th-21st c.)

What is the French idea of un Américain, une Américaine? What notions, what feelings, what memories are associated in French minds with «l'Amérique», or «les USA»?    

Since the name America was first used in 1507 on a map printed in Saint-Dié (a small town in Lorraine), there has been a French fascination for everything American. That fascination, however, has always been ambivalent. The “Sister Republics” soon became competing systems, and with the decline of French power and influence in the world, French people came to resent American “surpuissance”. We will explore this love-hate relationship, by placing it in historical perspective. We will focus on French (mis)representations of America and the US, from the 18th century to our days, with a special emphasis on the most recent period.

Readings will include selections from books by major French novelists, poets, philosophers, or sociologists (such as Buffon, Chateaubriand, Tocqueville, Baudelaire, Beauvoir, Sartre, Baudrillard, Quignard, etc.), as well as depictions of America and the Americans by lesser known travel-writers, journalists and observers. We will also use visual material, ranging from engravings and paintings to caricatures and movies —not forgetting Tintin's adventures in America.

Given in French. Students will be expected 1) to engage in discussions on the readings; 2) to give a 15-20 minutes oral presentation on a topic of their choice in relation to the course material and topics; 3) to write 2 short reaction papers, and a mid-term; 4) to define a research topic and write a final paper (10-15 pages), due at the end of the semester.

MW 3:30 pm – 5:15 pm (Roger)

FREN 4811  – Francophone Literature of Africa

Non-Western Perspectives. 

This course is an introduction to the Francophone literature of Africa, a survey with special emphasis on the post-World War II poets, novelists, and playwrights of Africa. The role of cultural and literary reviews (Légitime Défense, L'Etudiant noir, and Présence Africaine) in the historical and ideological development of this literature will be examined. Special reference will be made to Caribbean writers of the Negritude movement. Documentary videos on African history and cultures will be shown and important audio recordings will be played from time to time. Supplementary texts will be assigned occasionally. Students will be expected to present occasional response papers.

FREN 3032 is a pre-requisite for all French undergraduate courses on a higher level.

TR 12:30 pm – 1:45 pm (Dramé)

Graduate Courses

Advanced undergraduate students who have earned a B+ (or higher) in at least one 4000-level course may enroll in graduate level courses with instructor permission.

FREN 5011 – Old French

Introduction to reading Old French, with consideration of its main dialects (Ile-de-France, Picard, Anglo-Norman) and paleographical issues. May be taken in conjunction with FREN 5510/8510 or independently. Weekly reading exercises, a transcription and translation exercise, and a final open-book exam. Prerequisite: good reading knowledge of modern French, Latin or another romance language. Taught in English.

M         1:00 pm – 1:50 pm (Ogden)

FREN 5510/8510  – Topics in Medieval Literature:  MEDIEVAL Saints’ Lives

African saints.  Trans saints.  Saints’ Lives as media.  Saints in material culture and literature and history.

Recent academic enthusiasm for medieval saints’ Lives has begun to uncover the usefulness of this genre for gaining deeper understanding of both medieval and modern attitudes toward a variety of topics, from sexuality and sentiments to materiality and foreign cultures.  Reading Lives written between 880 and the late thirteenth century, together with the work of some of the most engaging scholars in the field of hagiography studies, we will investigate a variety of issues that resonate with current interests in the broader fields of medieval and French studies.  Readings include the Lives of St. Mary the Egyptian (a courtesan turned hermit), St. Catherine of Alexandria (known for her wisdom), St. Alexis (who abandoned his family), St. Louis IX (king of France), St. Euphrosyne (a woman who became a male monk), and St. Moses the Ethiopian (a brigand turned abbot).

MW 2:00 pm – 3:15 pm (Ogden)

FREN 5585.001/8585.001 – Topics in Civilization/Cultural Studies

This course will question nineteenth century archives in postcolonial francophone studies and their impact in writing cultural history. Colonialism destroyed cultural archives partly or completely. To understand the writing of cultural history in postcolonial contexts, it is urgent to have a better understanding of where the archives are and how we can explore them to write a decolonized cultural history. 

W         3:30 pm – 6:00 pm (Boutaghou)

FREN 5585.002/8585.002 – Topics in Civilization/Cultural Studies

The history of Literature is inseparable from the manifold efforts to limit, control, and repress writings which were (are) deemed subversive, deviant, or immoral. For most writers, playing with, around, or against religious, political, and moral censorships has been a necessary part of their art and trade to avoid jail, exile —or worse. This is, however, only one side of the coin. Another, no less important aspect of literary censorship is self-censorship. By self-censorship, I am not referring solely to personal decisions leading writers to tune down their works (or keep them for themselves). I am also referring to the many limitations imposed upon writing by the literary milieu itself, and its institutions. While self-censorship most often derives from the writer's desire to protect him/herself from harmful “consequences”, limitations placed upon writing by literary societies or institutions take various forms, and reflect diverse intentions. Traditionally, studies about censorship have been disconnected from studies about the esthetical rules and regulations prevailing in literary societies, such as the statements and rulings issued by Académies; the règles defining a literary genre; the check put on literary activities by normative critique; not forgetting the ukases issued by avant-garde groups.

In this course, we will look at the two faces of the coin by 1) historically revisiting the judicial forms of censorship (arrests, trials, etc.), and their impact upon literature; 2) examining in which ways, and to what extent the gens de lettres themselves established and enforced limitations, or taboos.

Last, but not least, we will try to examine and assert the creative, productive consequences of censorship and its constraints, in terms of literary innovation.   SCHEDULE AND DETAILS ON COLLAB

T          3:30 pm – 6:15 pm  (Roger)

FREN 7040 – Theories & Methods of Language Teaching

An introduction to pedagogical approaches currently practiced in second-language courses at the university level. Students will examine critically the theories behind various methodologies and the relation of those theories to their own teaching experience and goals. Assignments include readings and case studies on the teaching of French, development and critique of pedagogical materials, peer observation and analysis, and a portfolio project for collecting, sharing, and reflecting on teaching methods.

Required for all GTAs teaching French at UVa for the first time. Restricted to Graduate Teaching Assistants in French. 3 credits. Students will register for the graded (letter grade) option in the SIS. Graduate exchange instructors will take the course as auditors.

TR       2:00 PM – 3:15 PM (James)