Arts, Cultures and Society from Romanticism to the Present Day

Our course investigates intellectual and artistic movements in France from the 19th century to today. In short, we are interested in what mediates culture and society, throughout the literary lens. What are the great debates and expression that shape what we call “French culture”? How are nation and selfhood constituted, especially so in the fields of literature and arts (visual, music)? Our focus stands on a stimulating set of approaches, from the legacy of the French Revolution to the conditions of hypermodernism. Our course draws on the source material of the French novel and considers the possibilities and problems the literary genre instantiates. Course work includes reading reports, team work or individual presentations, and two papers. Course and reading materials in French.

Required readings:

  • Sarrasine (1831). Honoré de Balzac
  • Nouvelles noires (1885). Émile Zola
  • L’étranger (1942). Albert Camus
  • L’amant (1984). Marguerite Duras
  • Encre sympathique (2021). Patrick Modiano

Language of instruction: French

Prerequisites: FREN 311 and one of FREN 224, FREN 401.