Spring 2021 Graduate Course Descriptions

Graduate Courses

Graduate Courses

Advanced undergraduate students may enroll in graduate level courses with instructor permission.

FREN 5540/8540 Topics in 18th Century Literature –– Telling Stories in the Eighteenth Century

This course will provide an overview of eighteenth-century novels, with particular focus on the roman à tiroir (1001 Nuits), the epistolary novel (Lettres persanes), the conte philosophique (Candide), and the deconstructed plot of Jacques le Fataliste. The course will examine the experimental narrative techniques employed by 18th-century authors. We will see how this genre developed from Antiquity to the Spanish Golden Age, with a detour into the world of Middle-Eastern oral storytelling. Secondary readings will include theoretical approaches such as structuralism, reader reception, new developments in Orientalism, and the history of the book. We will also venture outside the literary field to consider some cognitive theories about why the mind feels the need to connect disparate events into a single thread.

R         3:30 pm – 6:00 pm (Tsien)

FREN 5581/8581 Topics/Seminar in African Literature/Culture 

This course is a survey of 20th century Francophone literature of Africa. Colonial literature and Assimilation; Negritude, Nationalism and Identity; Postcolonial literature; Feminism; Literature and Censorship; Language and Literature; Theatre and ritual performance; and Oral literature as a major inter-text will all be examined through novels, poems, and plays by contemporary African writers in French. 

Oral presentations, response papers, and a final research paper are required.

W        3:30 pm – 6:00 pm (Dramé)

FREN 5584/8584 Topics/Seminar in Cinema

This seminar aims to introduce students to the rich history of French cinema, from its origins in the birth of photography and other proto-cinematic technologies in the nineteenth century, to the advent of digital cinema at the dawn of the twenty-first. Provides a broad overview of key movements and genres, as well as concurrent trends in film theory and criticism. Students will be invited to reflect closely on film form, and to consider each film in light of the socio-historical context within which it was produced. We will also spend time thinking about best practices to adopt when designing undergraduate (and even graduate) cinema seminars. May include, but is not limited to, works by Lumière, Méliès, Feuillade, Gance, Buñuel/Dalì, Vigo, Carné, Renoir, Godard, Marker, Truffaut, Varda, Resnais, Chabrol, Tavernier, Besson, Pialat, Ozon, Kechiche, Cantet, Audiard, Asseyas, Desplechin, Sciamma, and Jeunet. Course conducted mostly in French. Will work well as a synchronous zoom seminar, if necessary.

T          3:30 pm – 6:00 pm (Blatt)

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