• FREN 100: Balloons and Cultures: Graphic Novels of the French Speaking World

    Can everyone read graphic novels? Of course; however, their accessibility doesn’t mean they are simple. In this course, students will learn to read graphic novels as cultural products generated by artists, places, and institutions. Coming from French-speaking countries in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, these texts argue for different (and sometimes contradictory) definitions of the genre; but also bring to the fore political and societal issues at stake in the francophone world. Using the tools of contemporary theory, students will draw connections between art and cultural representations. Conducted in English. Texts in translation.

    6 credits; Argument and Inquiry Seminar, Writing Requirement, International Studies; offered Fall 2023 · Sandra Rousseau
  • FREN 101: Elementary French

    This course introduces the basic structures of the French language and everyday vocabulary in the context of common cultural situations. Students are exposed to all four skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking). Taught five days a week in French. Prerequisites: None. Placement score for students with previous experience in French 6 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Fall 2023 · Anthony Revelle, Sarah Anthony
  • FREN 102: Elementary French

    Building on the material covered in French 101, this course introduces complex sentences and additional verb tenses. Students apply the tools of narration in context through the reading of short literary and cultural texts. The focus of the course is on all four skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking). Taught five days a week in French. Prerequisites: French 101 or equivalent 6 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Winter 2024 · Stephanie Cox, Sarah Anthony, Chérif Keïta
  • FREN 103: Intermediate French

    This course continues the study of complex sentence structures and reviews basic patterns in greater depth, partly through the discussion of authentic short stories and cultural topics. Throughout the course, students practice all four skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking). Taught five days a week in French. Prerequisites: French 102 or equivalent 6 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Fall 2023, Spring 2024 · Chérif Keïta, Sarah Anthony, Stephanie Cox, Anthony Revelle
  • FREN 204: Intermediate French

    Through readings, discussions, analysis of media, and other activities, this course increases students’ skill and confidence in French. Continuing the emphasis on all modes of communication begun in French 101-103, French 204 focuses on Francophone cultures, contemporary issues, and an iconic text in French. Taught three days a week in French.

    Prerequisites: French 103 or equivalent 6 credits; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024 · Éva Pósfay, Anthony Revelle, Chérif Keïta
  • FREN 206: Contemporary French and Francophone Culture

    Through texts, images and films coming from different continents, this class will present Francophone cultures and discuss the connections and tensions that have emerged between France and other French speaking countries. Focused on oral and written expression this class aims to strengthen students’ linguistic skills while introducing them to the academic discipline of French and Francophone studies. The theme will be school and education in the Francophone world.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or equivalent 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Winter 2024 · Sandra Rousseau
  • FREN 208: French and Francophone Studies in Paris Program: Contemporary France: Cultures, Politics, Society

    This course seeks to deepen students’ knowledge of contemporary French culture through a pluridisciplinary approach, using multimedia (books, newspaper and magazine articles, videos, etc.) to generate discussion. It will also promote the practice of both oral and written French through exercises, debates, and oral presentations.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or equivalent 6 credits; Humanistic Inquiry, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Scott Carpenter
  • FREN 210: Coffee and News

    Keep up your French while learning about current issues in France, as well as world issues from a French perspective. Class meets once a week for an hour. Requirements include reading specific sections of leading French newspapers, (Le Monde, Libération, etc.) on the internet, and then meeting once a week to exchange ideas over coffee with a small group of students.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or instructor approval 2 credits; S/CR/NC; Humanistic Inquiry, International Studies; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024 · Éva Pósfay
  • FREN 236: Francophone Cinema and the African Experience

    Born as a response to the colonial gaze (ethnographic films, in particular) and ideological discourse, African cinema has been a determined effort to capture and affirm an African personality and consciousness. Focusing on film production from Francophone Africa and its diaspora over the past few decades, this course will address themes such as slavery, colonialism, and national identity, as well as the immigrant experience in France and in Quebec. It will provide an introduction to African symbolisms, world-views, and narrative techniques.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or equivalent 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 243: Food in French Fiction

    What does “eating together” mean in France–and for whom? Through works of fiction, we will investigate cultural representations of food from the Middles Ages to the present day and address the following topics: the construction of a so-called “national gastronomy”; the social significance of food for Caribbean and African communities in France; the link between food and collective memory; women’s writings’ relationship with food in colonial and postcolonial masculinist contexts; the Rabelaisian disruptive potential of bodily pleasures; and contemporary ethical issues, such as the rise of veganism and animal rights activism.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or equivalent 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Winter 2024 · Anthony Revelle
  • FREN 244: Contemporary France and Humor

    This class is an overview of France’s social, cultural, and political history from 1939 onwards. The core units of this class (WWII, decolonization, May 1968, the Women’s liberation movement, the rise of the National Front, globalization, and immigration) will be studied through their comic representations. Sources for this class will include historical, political, literary and journalistic texts as well as photographs, paintings, videos, blogs, and music. The contrast between comical and non-comical texts and objects will highlight the uses and functions of humor in communicating about history, and illustrate the impact of comic discourses in everyday culture. In French.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or equivalent 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Sandra Rousseau
  • FREN 245: Francophone Literature of Africa and the Caribbean

    Reading and discussion of literary works, with analysis of social, historical and political issues, with an emphasis on cultural and literary movements such as Négritude (El Negrismo, in Cuba) and their role in shaping ideas of self-determination, Nationalism and Independence in the French colonies of the Caribbean and Black Africa. We will read works by Aimé Césaire (Martinique), Léopold Sédar Senghor (Senegal), Léon Gontran Damas (French Guiana), Jacques Roumain (Haîti), Laye Camara (Guinea), Mongo Béti (Cameroun), Simone Schwartz-Bart (Guadeloupe) and Alain Mabanckou (Congo). Conducted in French.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or the equivalent 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 246: Contemporary Senegal

    This course is the second part of a two-term course sequence beginning with French 308. This course will be a critical examination of the Francophone label within the context of literature, education, history and daily life in Senegal. During the December break field trip, students will visit significant cultural sites in Dakar and Saint Louis and meet with writers, artists, and other major thought leaders. During the winter term, students will complete an independent project based on their experience in Senegal as part of this course.

    Prerequisites: French 308 term before 6 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 250: French History in 10 Objects

    This class is an overview of French history through the analysis of ten cultural objects borrowed from different socio-political, geographic and aesthetic spaces. Starting with the Gauls, this class will take students across centuries and ask how cultural productions (the Vix Krater, the Versailles Palace, the guillotine, etc.) come to represent a mentalité and often become integrated in the French nationalist project.

    Prerequisites: French 204 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 254: French and Francophone Studies in Paris Program: French Art in Context

    Home of some of the finest and best known museums in the world, Paris has long been recognized as a center for artistic activity. Students will have the opportunity to study art from various periods on site, including Impressionism, Expressionism, and Surrealism. In-class lectures and discussions will be complemented by guided visits to the unparalleled collections of the Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, the Centre Pompidou, local art galleries, and other appropriate destinations. Special attention will be paid to the program theme.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or the equivalent and Participation in OCS Paris Program 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Scott Carpenter
  • FREN 255: French and Francophone Studies in Paris Program: Islam in France: Historical Approaches and Current Debates

    In this course, students will explore the historical, cultural, social, and religious traces of Islam as they have been woven over time into the modern fabric of French society. Through images drawn from film, photography, television, and museum displays, they will discover the important role this cultural contact zone has played in the French experience. The course will take advantage of the resources of the city of Paris and will include excursions to museums as well as cultural and religious centers.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or the equivalent and participation in Paris OCS program 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Spring 2024 · Scott Carpenter
  • FREN 259: French and Francophone Studies in Paris Program: Hybrid Paris

    Through literature, cultural texts, and experiential learning in the city, this course will explore the development of both the “Frenchness” and the hybridity that constitute contemporary Paris. Immigrant cultures, notably North African, will also be highlighted. Plays, music, and visits to cultural sites will complement the readings.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or the equivalent and participation in OCS Paris program 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Scott Carpenter
  • FREN 280: Argue! Practicing Eloquence

    Eloquence has been described as being able to say what is necessary and not say what is not. The idea of “speaking well” has changed over time and continues to evolve in French society. Can one speak well with an accent, with grammatical mistakes, with slang, or with curse words? How has France fabricated its language as a sacred treasure, and how has this vision excluded native and non-native French speakers? The history of eloquence will be complemented by its practice as students learn to master different registers of French language and learn to argue effectively.

    Prerequisites: French 204 or the equivalent 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Fall 2023 · Sandra Rousseau
  • FREN 308: France and the African Imagination

    This course will look at the presence of France and its capital Paris in the imaginary landscape of a number of prominent African writers, filmmakers and musicians such as Bernard Dadié (Côte d’ Ivoire), Ousmane Sembène (Senegal), Calixthe Beyala (Cameroun), Alain Mabanckou (Congo-Brazzaville), Salif Keïta (Mali) and others. The history of Franco-African relations will be used as a background for our analysis of these works. Conducted in French.

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Fall 2023 · Chérif Keïta
  • FREN 330: Bodies and Borders: Encountering the other in Medieval French

    Exploring chivalric romances, Crusades epics, fantastic tales, and the Grail legend, this course invites students to develop their knowledge of French literature in the Global Middle Ages. How do medieval texts stage encounters between social groups, between different cultures, between species? And how do we encounter these texts, and what do we encounter in them? With texts available both in the original Old French and in modern French translations, we will investigate what encountering the Other in medieval texts has to say to us regarding cultural hybridity, gender, religious conflicts, racial difference, political formation, and sharing the world with others.

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 or instructor permission 6 credits; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Anthony Revelle
  • FREN 350: Middle East and French Connection

    PersepolisSyngue SabourLe rocher de Tanios—three prize-winning texts written in French by authors whose native tongue was not French but Arabic or Farsi. In this class we will direct our attention to the close—albeit problematic—relations between France and the Middle East (broadly considered) through an analysis of cultural and literary objects. What has this “French connection” meant for the Middle-Eastern and for French culture?

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 or instructor permission 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 353: The French Chanson

    In Beaumarchais’s oft-cited words, “Everything ends with songs.” This course will study the distinctiveness of French chanson (song) and its unique role in French history and culture from Montmartre’s cafés-concerts to the present. We will examine iconic performances in Parisian cabarets, music halls, and nightclubs; the rise of the singer-songwriter; the changing dynamics between lyrics (poetry), music, and performance over time; song categories such as yé-yé, the protest song, and the chanson about Paris; rap and slam’s poetic affiliation with chanson; musical hybridity and identity politics; and the clout of the music industry. No musical experience necessary. Conducted in French.

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 or instructor permission 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 359: French and Francophone Studies in Paris Program: Hybrid Paris

    Through literature, cultural texts, and experiential learning in the city, this course will explore the development of both the “Frenchness” and the hybridity that constitute contemporary Paris. Immigrant cultures, notably North African, will also be highlighted. Plays, music, and visits to cultural sites will complement the readings.

    Prerequisites: French 230 or beyond and participation in OCS Paris program 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Scott Carpenter
  • FREN 360: The Algerian War of Liberation and Its Representations

    Over fifty years after Algeria’s independence from France, discourses and representations about the cause, the violence, and the political and social consequences of that conflict still animate public life in both France and Algeria. This class aims at presenting the Algerian war through its various representations. Starting with discussions about the origins of French colonialism in North Africa, it will develop into an analysis of the war of liberation and the ways it has been recorded in history books, pop culture, and canonical texts. We will reflect on the conflict and on its meanings in the twenty-first century, and analyze how different media become memorial artifacts.

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 or instructor permission 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; offered Winter 2024 · Sandra Rousseau
  • FREN 370: Cultural Mutations in the Francophone World: Theory and Practice

    Racisé, transclasse, personne valide, female gaze are all concepts that have emerged recently in the Francophone world even though they reflect experiences that have existed for a very long time. In this class we will work through such concepts and explore how central they are to the contemporary Francophone world. Through theoretical texts and cultural artefacts (films, songs, BD, literature) from Morocco, France, Belgium, Senegal, and other spaces, this class seeks to develop a deeper understanding of the issues that animate the French-speaking world today.

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 or instructor permission 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 380: Comics: Sequence with Consequence

    In the Francophone world comics are known as the ninth art, a popular, legitimate–albeit contested–art form. What then differentiates this art form from others? How do comics create meaning? How do they tell stories? What stories do they tell? In this class we will develop a multilayered approach to comics by analyzing the form and content of texts, but also by questioning the place of comics in French, Algerian, and Québecois societies. Readings will include iconic texts (Asterix, Tintin), alternative comics (by Fabcaro, Louerrad, Ziadé), theoretical pieces on bandes dessinées, and conversations with working artists.

    Prerequisites: One French course beyond French 204 or instructor permission 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis, International Studies; not offered 2023–2024
  • FREN 400: Integrative Exercise

    During their senior year, students expand and deepen an essay in French from one of their advanced courses in the major. Normally, but not always, the director for this project will be the professor from that course. This essay may be completed during any term, but must be finished by the end of winter term. In the spring term, students deliver an oral presentation (in English) summarizing their work. Seniors may choose either of the following: 1) A substantial individual essay, or 2) An individual essay that complements work done in a second major (subject to approval by the Department). Further details are available on the Department’s website.

    3 credits; S/NC; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024 · Éva Pósfay