Course Offerings Fall 2013


If you are currently in French 202 or 206, take French 210 or 212 next.
If you are currently in French 210 or 212, take French 303, 304, 305, or 306 next. If you don't feel ready to move up, you can take French 212 or 210.
If you are currently in French 290, take 304, 305, or 306 next. You may not take 303 for credit if the topic is the same.
If you are currently in French 305, take French 304, 306, 314 or 315 next. You should not take any more 200-level courses.
After you have taken 314 or 315, you may take any course above 305 in any order, regardless of specific course numbers. IMPORTANT: there is no difference in level between, say, 321 and 392.

The senior seminar French 450 is only guaranteed in the spring semester. And yes: you may take a 300-level course after having taken 450.

Here follow course descriptions for this fall's topics courses. Please consult the W&M course catalog for all other descriptions.

FREN 151, FREN 303, FREN 305, FREN 314, FREN 315, FREN 363, FREN 385, FREN 412

FREN 151.Ecology in French Cinema - 17525

Prof. Fauvel. 15 students limit.

La destruction de l'environnement par l'être humain est massive. La consommation d'énergie de plus en plus grande. En même temps, les films sur l'écologie et l'environnement se multiplient et ont beaucoup de succès. Pourtant, leurs messages sont ignorés  ! Cours en français sur les problèmes écologiques évoqués dans ces films, leurs effets sur l'environnement et la conscience des citoyens, ainsi que leurs techniques cinématographiques.

Freshmen Seminar Req


FREN 303 The French Revolution - 18968

Prof. Pacini. 18 students limit.

Students who have already taken FREN 290 "The French Revolution" may not repeat this course for credit. This seminar studies the history and significance of the French revolution through the analysis of different media (e.g. political discourse; literary documents; caricatures; songs; paintings; material culture).


FREN 305. The Craft of Writing.

Prof. Fauvel - 18923. 16 students limit

Prof. St. Clair- 10632. 16 students limit



FREN 314. Introduction to French Cultural Studies- 10634

Prof. M. Leruth 18 students limit

This course offers an introduction to the methods and topics of the field of French cultural studies through the study of evolving, institutionalized and disputed constructs of French national identity.  Special focus will be given to national myths rooted in a broad range of historical periods; the cultural paradigms of nineteenth-century Paris; the relationship between colonialism, immigration, urban society, religion, and multicultural identities; current social and cultural issues as reflected in a contemporary novel; and an individual research project on a topic of the student’s choice.

GE4A Hist/Cultr Euro Tradition, GE5 Lit/Hist of the Arts



FREN 315. Literature in its Cultural Context.

Prof. St. Clair

French 315 – Literature in its cultural contexts: Pity and Fear in French Literature, 1670-1950.

At base, tragedy is but one way in which literature thinks through, performs, plots out, and resists the sociopolitical, historical, and cultural catastrophes of modernity, if not the riddle of human existence [e.g., the death of God, war, crises of sovereignty, the French Revolution and the Terror, 1848, and, in the 20th century, the Occupation and the Shoa].

French 315 proposes a study of tragedy in French literature, from classical theatre to the modern novel that explores tragedy as a mode of representation for the following aesthetic, political, and philosophical dilemmas/questions: in what circumstances is suffering meaningful? Is the relationship to the past (where curses, warnings, and prophecies are uttered and ghosts lie waiting) always invariably tragic? Does the law (or the State) produce tragedy? In what ways are emotions such as mourning and rage always at the heart of tragedy? What does the tragic teach us about the relationship between contingency and destiny, between our capacity as agents to act and the unforeseeable/unpredictable consequences of our actions?

Students in French 315 will hone rhetorical and interpretative competency over 4 short papers, lead discussions on texts in class, and continue to work on structuring and presenting arguments in the genre of literary analysis.

Readings include: Racine (Phèdre), Balzac (Adieu); Baudelaire (Les Fleurs du Mal; Spleen de Paris) ; Rimbaud (Poésies) ; Camus (La Chute) ; and Sartre (Le Mur). 

GER4A Hist/Cultr Euro Tradition  GER5 Lit/Hist of the Arts



FREN 363. Culture 3: Social Trends - 18924

Prof. M. Leruth. 18 students limit.

This course will examine major social and cultural trends in France over the past 20 years, placed in a broader historical context.  It will consider how France has become a more complex, diverse, divided, and dynamic country than certain stereotypes suggest.  Examples of topics to be considered include education, family life, gender, class, and generational differences, multiculturalism, immigration, identity politics, urban life, new forms of community,  the evolution of value systems, work, leisure, media, and popular culture.  The course will be based predominantly on current articles from the French press but will also incorporate scholarly texts, online materials, and relevant films.



FREN 385. Francophone African Lit I - 18925

Prof. Compan. 18 students limit.

This course offers students a study of the colonial and post-colonial Francophone world through the theme of violence. Students will examine the forms and uses of violence in French-language literature and films from sub-saharan Africa, the Caribbean, and the Indian Ocean.

GE4B Hist/Cult outside EurTrad



FREN 412. Teaching Practicum - 16558

Prof. A. Leruth