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Fall 2011 Courses

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FRENCH 87400

The French Revolution
Professor Rosenblatt

Course conducted in English.

GC 4:15-6:15
Room: TBA
2/4 credits


FRENCH 71110

Problems in French Literary History
Professor Stanton

GC 4:15-6:15
Room: 4202.11
4 credits

FRENCH 76000

Le Postmodernisme et le roman au vingtieme siécle
Professor Jones

GC 6:30-8:30
Room: 4202.11
2/4 credits


FRENCH 86000

French Art and Text: Mannerism to Modernism
Professor Caws

Course conducted in English.

GC 4:15-6:15
Room: 4202.11
2/4 credits

FRENCH 87200

Feast, Famine and Fast
Professor Sautman

Course conducted in English.

GC 6:30-8:30
Room: 4202.11
2/4 credits


FRENCH 77010

Techniques of Literary Research
Professor Consenstein

Open only to first year French students.

GC 6:30-8:30
Room: 4202.11
4 credits

French 87400. The French Revolution.
(History 71500-The French Revolution)
GC, M, 4:15-6:15pm, Rm. TBA, 2/4 credits, Professor Rosenblatt. In English.

This course is an in-depth introduction to the French Revolution and the debates surrounding it. We will privilege political/cultural/intellectual perspectives, reading some of the most innovative and thought-provoking work on a number of key topics, such as the causes of the Revolution and its radicalization; the nature and legacies of the revolutionary wars and Terror; the question of Jean-Jacques Rousseau's influence; the Revolution's performance in the areas of gender and race; and the ideologies it engendered.

French 71110. Problems in French Literary History: The Novel.
GC: Tu, 4:15-6:15pm, Rm. 4202.11, 2/4 credits, Professor Stanton. In French.

This course on the history and theory of the novel will begin with a set of readings (Scholes, Bakhtin, Brooks, Genette, Barthes, Sedgwick) on aspects of narrative and narratology. We will then read closely six novels beginning with La Princesse de Clèves and Les liaisons dangereuses, followed by Ourika and Madame Bovary, and ending with Du côté de chez Swann and Djebar's Ombre sultane. Our discussions will be informed by critical readings for each text.

Goals of this course include: gaining an understanding of the sweep of the French novel, reading novels intensively for their narratological, thematic and ideological/political and gender scripts, writing analytical papers on literary texts, doing literary research, reading critical theory critically, and improving spoken and written literary/critical French.

Work for the course, over and above class preparation and participation, involves two short papers 5-7 pp), a final paper (topic developed in consultation with the instructor ) and a final exam.

The course will be conducted in French; written work will be in French for students in French; students from other departments may write their papers in English.

For further information, please contact Domna Stanton (

French 76000. Le postmodernisme et le roman au vingtième siècle.
GC: Tu, 6:30-8:30pm, Rm. 4202.11, 2/4 credits, Professor Jones. In French

En simplifiant à l'extrême, on tient pour « postmoderne » l'incrédulité à l'égard 
des métarécits.-Lyotard.

Dans ce cours, nous examinerons en quoi consiste le postmodernisme (question complexe), et comment les courants postmodernes se manifestent dans le roman en français—de Proust jusqu'à la fin du vingtième siècle. On commencera avec les romanciers considérés traditionnellement comme modernistes, pour s'interroger sur la différence entre le modernisme et le postmodernisme. S'agit-il d'une évolution, ou d'une vraie révolution Khunienne dans la conception du roman ? On considérera les contributions des penseurs tels que Derrida, Cixous, Kristeva, Lyotard, Baudrillard, Jameson, Benjamin, Foucault, Deleuze, Guattari, et Barthes à la conception du postmoderne (coursepak). On lira ensemble les romans suivants :

Proust. Sodome et Gomorrhe. (1922).
Gide. Les Faux-monnayeurs. (1925).
Céline. Voyage au bout de la nuit. (1932).
Genet. Journal du voleur. (1949).
Beckett. Molloy. (1951).
Robbe-Grillet. La Jalousie. (1957).
Duras. Le Ravissement de Lol V. Stein (1964).
Perec. W, ou le souvenir de l'enfance. (1975).
Condé. Traversée de la mangrove. (1989).

French 86000 French Art and Text: Mannerism to Modernism
GC: W, 4:15-6:15, Rm. 4202.11, 2/4 credits, Professor Caws, In English

This seminar will deal with some interchanges – explicit and implicit – between the visual and the verbal, in the French domain, taken in the broad sense. Artists and writers who established themselves in France will count, in this case, as part of the material (examples: Goya, Huidobro, Picasso, etc.) We will move, more or less chronologically, but sallying forth sideways and analogically, not disdaining major non-French critics, from the mannerist and baroque manifestations of the Ecole de Fontainebleau, via Poussin – seen through the eyes of Louis Marin and Bonnefoy – toward Greuze seen by Diderot and Michael Fried, the romantics with Baudelaire and Delacroix, the symbolists with Mallarmé and Whistler and Manet, brushing by Gautier, on to cubism, with Braque and Picasso, Reverdy, Jacob, Apollinaire, and Proust on Chardin (how not?), on to surrealism with Man Ray, Claude Cahun, Wifredo Lam, Breton and Eluard, ending with Malraux on everyone, Bonnefoy on Goya and the point of view we call "modernism, " au sens large. NB Of course we can't read it, see it, think it all, but will delight in trying what we can.

French 87200 Feast, Famine and Fast also listed as MSCP 80500
GC: W, 6:30-8:30, Rm. TBA, 2/4 credits, Professor Sautman, In English

This interdisciplinary course draws on the materials, methods and issues of anthropology, literary analysis, cultural and social history,and the study of visual cultures. It addresses the many ways food—its production, exchange, ritualization and preparation--interfaced with other defining aspects of medieval cultures, such as political power, religious practices, and the articulation of identities.
It focuses on the later Middle Ages (13th to early 15th centuries) but also covers some problems of the early modern period (15th to early 17th). The themes studied thus include, but are not limited to, asceticism, rejecting animal flesh, carnival mythologies, the politics of banquets, the cult of hunting, wine in ritual and commodity exchange, food, medicine and health regimens, all the way to the colonization of the "New World" and the effects of transatlantic slavery and plantation economies on food practices and identities.
While this not a literature course, there will be discussion of the uses of food as literary device and symbol in major works of medieval literature such as Juan Ruiz de Hita's Libro de Buen Amor, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales or Villon's Testaments. As well, contemporary theoretical approaches to visual cultures will be applied to the iconography of food, while the use of historical documents such as account books or regimens of health will be given careful attention. Some of the readings, both in medieval and early modern studies and in modern theory, include, but are not limited to, work by Arjun Appadurai, Ann Astell, Carolyn Bynum, Joan Cadden, Piero Camporesi, Carole Counihan, Carlo Ginzburg, Allen Grieco, Terence Scully, Timothy Tomasik, and Allen Weiss.