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Course Descriptions

Department of French Language and Literature

P.O. Box 400770
University of Virginia
Charlottesville, Virginia 22904-4770
Phone: (434) 924-7158
Fax: (434) 924-7157
www.virginia. edu/french

Overview The French language and literature have been taught at the University since its founding by Thomas Jefferson, who based the design of his Academical Village on French structures he visited while he was the United States minister to France. In keeping with its founder's international outlook and interest in many disciplines, French is taught here today as both a medium of practical communication and as the foundation for a lifetime of learning, travel, and intellectual and cultural exploration. Courses in French today include the study of the literature, history, and cinema of the many other French-speaking nations.

Faculty The department has attracted a group of highly diverse and internationally-known scholars, whose expertise ranges from medieval romance to African cinema, and whose interdisciplinary interests link them to linguistics, the history of medicine, and political and literary theory. Demonstrating excellence in teaching as well as scholarship and public service, several faculty members have received prestigious awards for their excellence in the classroom.

Students More than half of the French majors have two majors, and the faculty urges students to make French part of a broad liberal arts education. The most popular combinations of majors with French are foreign affairs, economics, comparative literature, anthropology, Spanish and pre-medical studies. A number of French majors combine a French undergraduate degree with a Master's degree in education (see below). Although for some students French has an obvious practical link to their future career, for many the study of French is a way to refine their skills of analysis, interpretation, argument, and speaking. Students in French work closely with faculty members, and class size is kept small so that each student can participate in class discussion and thus regularly improve their French.

Special Resources
La Maison Francaise, the French House, a restored Victorian mansion, is a student residence in which only French is spoken in the common areas. Students may apply during their first year at the University and may live there during their second, third, and fourth years. Applicants to the Maison need not be French majors. The Robertson Media Center in Clemons Library has an extensive video collection of films in French. Alderman Library is home to the Gordon Collection of rare books in French, with strength primarily in the period from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment. The department participates actively in the establishment of programs of study for undergraduate students in France and other French-speaking countries, including study centers in Lyon, France, and Rabat, Morocco.

Requirements for Major Totaling 30 credits (or ten three-credit courses), the major in French requires FREN 331 followed by 332, and any other eight courses selected by the student in consultation with a department advisor. To count toward the major, each course must be completed with a grade of "C" or better. Of these eight courses, at least three must be at the 400 level or above (language, culture, or literature). 400-level literature courses must be preceded by at least one 300-level literature course unless the student is exempted by the instructor or the major advisor. The following courses carry no credit toward the major or minor: FREN 311, 333 and 335 or any FRTR course.

Distinguished Majors Program in French The DMP is available to French majors presenting an overall GPA of at least 3.4 and departmental GPA of 3.5 in courses at the 300-level or above. The DMP consists of FREN 498 and 499, as well as one advanced major course taken for honors. Students typically apply for admission in the spring of their third year.

Combined B.A.-M.T. Program Anyone interested in teaching French at the secondary level may wish to look into the Bachelor of Arts and Master of Teaching Program, offered jointly with the Curry School of Education. This five-year program involves both a complete major in French following a specified curriculum and a course of study leading to professional teaching licensure. It is a complex program and requires careful planning. This program is described in the Undergraduate Record; both the College of Arts and Sciences section and the Curry School of Education section should be consulted. For details beyond those published in the Curry School's section of the Record (Teacher Degree Programs), please consult the director of undergraduate studies.

Requirements for Minor Totaling 18 credits (or six three-credit courses), the minor in French is fulfilled by completion of FREN 331 and 332 or the equivalent, plus four electives chosen from among those that carry credit toward the major. At least one of the electives must be on the 400 level.

With approval by the director of undergraduate studies, up to twelve credits toward the major (or six credits toward the minor) may be earned in an approved program abroad. Placement of first-year students presenting admissions credit in French is normally based on the SAT French Achievement Test or the placement test administered by the College during summer orientation. Students with an AP language score of 3 have fulfilled the College language requirement and are placed in FREN 331. Students with an AP language score of 4 or 5 receive three credits for FREN 331 and should see an advisor in the French Department about placement. Students with an AP literature score of 4 receive three credit hours for FREN 332 and should see an advisor for placement.

Additional Information For more information, contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of French Language and Literature, 302 Cabell Hall, Charlottesville, VA 22903; (434) 924-7158; www.virginia.edu/french.

Course Descriptions


Note: The following courses may not be taken to fulfill the language requirement, nor as part of the requirements for the major in French. French in Translation (Taught in English)

FRTR 220 - (3) (IR)
Topics in French and Francophone Culture

Introduces the interdisciplinary study of culture in France or other French-speaking countries. Topics vary from year to year, and may include cuisine and national identity; literature and history; and contemporary society and cultural change. Taught by one or several professors in the French department.

FRTR 221 - (3) (IR)
Topics in Medieval Literature

An introduction to the culture of the High Middle Ages in France. Topics vary and may include love literature, family relations, war, and science and religion. May be repeated for credit for different topics.

FRTR 223 - (3) (IR)
Topics in French Baroque and Classical Culture

An introduction to seventeenth century French literature, both fiction and non-fiction, against the background of the period's political, religious, and philosophical controversies and of its plastic arts.

FRTR 244 - (3) (IR)
Topics in French Cinema

Studies topics relating to concepts of film structure, history, and criticism in French and within the French tradition. Topics offered include Introduction to French Cinema and Written Text/Film Text.

FRTR 329/790 - (3) (IR)
Contemporary Caribbean Culture

Comparative examination of contemporary culture in the Caribbean region with an emphasis on literature. Considers historical writing (essays), musical forms, and film as manifestations of the process of creolization in the area. Questions of ethnic diversity and nation-building are central to the course. Courses Given in French

FREN 101 - (4) (S-SS)
Elementary French

Prerequisite: Limited or no previous formal instruction in French.
Development of basic oral expression, listening and reading comprehension, and writing. Language laboratory work is required. Followed by FREN 102.

FREN 102 - (4) (S-SS)
Elementary French

Prerequisite: FREN 101 or one or two years of previous formal instruction in French and appropriate SAT score. Designed for students with an elementary knowledge of French. Further develops the skills of speaking, listening, comprehension, reading, and writing. Language laboratory work is required. Followed by FREN 201.

FREN 105 - (4) (S)
Accelerated Elementary French

Prerequisite: Previous background in French (more than two years of French in secondary school) and an achievement test score below 540 or a placement score below 378, or permission of the department. Reviews basic oral expression, listening, reading comprehension, and writing. Covers the material in the FREN 101-102 text in one semester at an accelerated pace. Language lab required followed by FREN 201.

FREN 201 - (3) (S-SS)
Intermediate French

Prerequisite: FREN 102 or one to three years of formal instruction in French and appropriate SAT score. Develops the skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Focuses on reading skill development through readings on contemporary Francophone culture and short stories. Followed by FREN 202.

FREN 202 - (3) (S-SS)
Intermediate French

Prerequisite: FREN 201 or one to three years of formal instruction in French and appropriate SAT score. Designed for continued development of the four skills at an advanced level. Readings emphasize contemporary Francophone culture and include a modern French play.

FREN 211 - (1) (IR)
Intermediate French Conversation

Corequisite: FREN 201 and 202, or instructor permission. Supplementary course in conversation and vocabulary to compliment FREN 201 and FREN 202.

FREN 231 - (1) (IR)
Intensive Intermediate French Conversation

Corequisite: FREN 232. Supplementary course in conversation and vocabulary to complement FREN 232.

FREN 232 - (3) (S)
Intensive Intermediate French

Prerequisite: Appropriate placement score or departmental permission (contact the Language Program Director). This in-depth, intermediate-level course is recommended for students whose placement scores nearly exempt them from FREN 202, and for any students who wish to refine and expand their mastery of French grammar before taking 300-level courses. Students who have completed FREN 202 may take 232 as an elective to fine-tune their language skills.

FREN 311 - (1) (S)
French Conversation and Vocabulary

Prerequisite: Completion of the foreign language requirement; corequisite: enrollment in a 300-level French course.
Supplementary course in conversation and vocabulary development. May not be used for major or minor credit or to satisfy the language requirement.

FREN 331 - (3) (S)
Intensive Grammar

Prerequisite: FREN 202, 232, or the equivalent, or appropriate SAT score. Required of majors and strongly recommended to others as preparation for all subsequent courses (except FREN 333 and 339).
Confirms and consolidates the knowledge of basic linguistic patterns. Emphasizes writing and progressive build-up of vocabulary.

FREN 332 - (3) (S)
The Writing and Reading of Texts

Prerequisite: FREN 331. Develops writing skills and strategies in French, including grammar, vocabulary, organization, and style through the careful reading and analysis of a variety of texts. This course is a prerequisite for all higher-level undergraduate FREN courses, except 333 and 339.

FREN 333 - (3) (S)
Oral and Written Expression in French

Prerequisite: FREN 232 or equivalent; instructor permission for those who completed only FREN 202; students who completed FREN 332 are excluded and must take FREN 334. Improves student's command of present-day spoken French. Includes conversation on topics of current interest, advanced vocabulary, some individualized writing practice. Limited enrollment. May not be used for major or minor credit.

FREN 334 - (3) (S)
Advanced Oral and Written Expression in French

Prerequisite: FREN 331 and either completion of FREN 332 or concurrent enrollment in FREN 332.
Improves command of present-day spoken French. Conversation on topics of current interest; advanced vocabulary; some individualized writing practice. Enrollment limited.

FREN 335 - (3) (IR)
Writing Workshop in French

Prerequisite: FREN 332. Improves skills in analytic and expository writing in French. Intensive exercises in composition and rewriting, including peer editing. May not be used for major or minor credit.

FREN 339 - (3) (S)

Prerequisite: FREN 202 or equivalent. Reviews pronunciation, phonetics, and phonology.

FREN 341 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Middle Ages and Sixteenth Century

Prerequisite: FREN 332.
Examines important trends in Medieval and Renaissance literature through close reading of representative works.

FREN 342 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries

Prerequisite: FREN 332.
Studies representative works of the 17th and 18th centuries, emphasizing certain themes common to the two centuries.

FREN 343 - (3) (S)
Literature of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

Prerequisite: FREN 332.
Explores representative works of the 19th and 20th centuries.

FREN 344 - (3) (Y)
Topics in French Cinema

Prerequisite: FREN 332. Studies topics relating to concepts of film structure, history, and criticism in French and within the French tradition. Topics offered include Introduction to Cinema and Texte ècrit/texte filmique.

FREN 345 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Cultural Studies

Prerequisite: FREN 332.
Interdisciplinary seminar in French and Francophone culture and society. Topics vary annually and may include literature and history, cinema and society, and cultural anthropology.

FREN 346 - (3) (IR)
African Literatures and Cultures

Prerequisite: FREN 332.
Introduction to African cultural studies. Languages and educational policies. Oral traditions: myths, epic narratives, poetry, folktales in French translation. Modern African-language literatures. Francophone literature. Representations of the postcolonial state in contemporary arts: painting, sculpture, music, and cinema. Museums and the representation of African cultures.

FREN 350 - (3) (IR)
History and Civilization of France: Middle Ages to Revolution

Prerequisite: FREN 332.
The social, political, economic, philosophical, and artistic developments in France from the Middle Ages to the French Revolution.

FREN 351 - (3) (Y)
History and Civilization of France: Revolution to 1945

Prerequisite: FREN 332. The social, political, economic, philosophical, and artistic developments in France from the Revolution until 1945.

FREN 368 - (3) (IR)
Selected Topics in French Linguistics

Prerequisite: FREN 331 and 339.
This course will include topics such as French outside France; regional French varieties; Romance dialectology; French socio-linguistics.

FREN 401 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Medieval Literature

Prerequisite: FREN 332 and at least one FREN course numbered 341 to 343 (or instructor permission).
Topics may vary and include individual identity, love, war, humor, and their expression through literary techniques. Texts are read in modern French translation. May be repeated for credit with different topics.

FREN 402 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Renaissance Literature

Prerequisite: FREN 332 and at least one FREN course numbered 341 to 343 (or instructor permission).
Examines major works of sixteenth-century French literature situated in the larger historical and cultural context of the Continental Renaissance. Topics vary and may include, for example, early novels and short stories, women writers, and urban culture. Course may be repeated for credit for different topics.

FREN 403 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Eighteenth-Century Literature

Prerequisite: FREN 332 and at least one FREN course numbered 341 to 343 (or instructor permission).
Topics in eighteenth-century French literature. Works of authors such as Beaumarchais, de Charriere, du Deffand, Diderot, Marivaux, Montesquieu, Rousseau, de Stael, Voltaire. May be repeated for credit with different topics.

FREN 405 - (3) (IR)
Topics in Nineteenth-Century Literature

Study of the various aspects of the nineteenth-century French literature. Topics vary. May be repeated for credit for different topics.

FREN 406 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Twentieth-Century Literature

Prerequisite: FREN 332 and at least one course in the 340-sequence.
Readings of significant literary works of the twentieth century. The genre, theme and specific chronological concentration will vary. May be repeated for credit.

FREN 408 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Seventeenth-Century Literature

Topics vary; may be repeated for credit. Recent topics have included classical theatre; poetics of the lyric; moralists; and fiction.

FREN 409 - (3) (Y)
Topics in Twentieth-Century Literature

Prerequisite: FREN 332 and at least one FREN course numbered 341 to 343. Readings of significant literary works on the twentieth century. The genre, theme, and specific chronological concentration will vary. May be repeated for credit with different topics.

FREN 410 - (3) (IR)
Aspects of the French Short Story

Studies themes and narrative styles according to various trends, including the witty, erotic, satirical, and didactic; suspense stories; and moral and existential debates. Readings from Perrault, La Fontaine, Voltaire, Diderot, Maupassant, Mérimée, Gide, Sartre, and Camus.

FREN 411 - (3) (Y)
Francophone Literature of Africa

Surveys the literary tradition in French, emphasizing post-World War II poets, novelists, and playwrights. Examines the role of cultural reviews in the development of this literary tradition.

FREN 428 - (3) (Y)
History of the French Language

Prerequisite: FREN 339 or the equivalent or instructor permission. Surveys the main currents of the French language in its development from the earliest to present times. Taught in French.

FREN 430 - (3) (Y)
Grammaire et Style

Prerequisite: B+ average in FREN 331 and 332. Grammar review through the traditional method of grammatical analysis; includes free composition.

FREN 435 - (3) (Y)
Tools and Techniques of Translation

Prerequisite: B+ average in FREN 331, 332, 430.
Written and oral translation exercises to and from the target language.

FREN 436 - (3) (Y)
The Culture of Commerce and Industry in France

Americans entering the French business setting must confront specifically French cultural standards, expectations, and practices. Investigates such topics as the organization of industry, banking, marketing, and management, as well as the role of government and the educational system.

FREN 438 - (3) (Y)
French Society and Civilization

Discusses political institutions and social problems based upon readings in recent publications and an analysis of current events.

FREN 443 - (3) (Y)
Africa in Cinema

Prerequisite: FREN 332 and FREN 344 or another 300-level literature course in French. Study of the representation of Africa in American, Western European and African films. Ideological Constructions of the African as "other". Exoticism in cinema. History of African cinema. Economic issues in African cinema: production, distribution, and the role of African film festivals. The socio-political context. Women in African cinema. Aesthetic problems: themes and narrative styles.

FREN 444 - (3) (Y)
French Literature and Film

Studies the relation between three or four French films and their sources in French literature and culture.

FREN 445 - (3) (IR)
Advanced Cultural Studies

Prerequisite: At least one literature or culture course beyond FREN 332.
Advanced seminar in French and Francophone literature and culture. Topics vary. May be repeated for credit for different topics.

FREN 451 - (3) (O)
French Comedy

Prerequisite:FREN 332 and either FREN 341, 342, or 343.
Studies dramatic comedy in France from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century, with comparison between comedy and other dramatic forms such as "tragi-comedy" and "theatre of the absurd." Texts by such authors as Corneille, Molière, Regnard, Marivaux, Musset, Feydeau, Jarry, and Beckett.

FREN 452 - (3) (IR)
Topics in French Poetry

Prerequisite: At least one literature or culture course beyond FREN 332.
Aspects of French Poetry. Topics vary and may range from general survey to studies of specific periods or authors; may be repeated for credit for different topics.

FREN 483, 484 - (3) (SI)
Advanced Seminars in Literature

Prerequisite: Completion of a 400-level literature course with a grade of B- or better.
Close study of a specific topic in French literature. Topics vary.

FREN 485 - (3) (IR)
Seminar in French Linguistics

Prerequisite:FREN 331, 339 and one 400-level course in French.
Topics of specific interest to faculty and advanced undergraduate students.

FREN 493, 494 - (3) (SI)
Independent Study-Selected Topics in French Literature and Civilization

Normally, only French majors may enroll in this course and only by written permission from the department chair prior to the end of the first week of classes.

FREN 498 - (3) (SI)
Pre-Thesis Tutorial

Prerequisite: Admission to the Distinguished Majors Program. Preliminary research for thesis.

FREN 499 - (3) (SI)

Prerequisite: FREN 498 and good standing in the Distinguished Majors Program. Composition and defense of thesis. Note The prerequisite to all 500-level literature courses is two 400-level literature courses with an average grade of B, or the instructor's permission.

FREN 501 - (3) (IR)
Language Development

Prerequisite: FREN 332. May not be taken by students who have completed FREN 430. Grammar, stylistics, composition, and translation (thème et version).

FREN 508 - (3) (SI)
Introduction to Reading Old French

Readings from several varieties of Old French, including the Île-de-France, Picard, and Anglo-Norman dialects. Considers the derivation of French from Latin. Taught in English.

FREN 509 - (3) (SI)
Introduction to Old Provencal Language and Literature

Presents Old Provencal (alias Old Occitan) as a grammatical system with some attention to its derivation from Latin. Includes readings of simple prose texts followed by poetic selections of the troubadours. Taught in English.

FREN 510, 511 - (3) (Y)
Medieval Literature in Modern French

Introduces literary forms, habits of style and thought, and conditions of composition from the late eleventh century to the late fifteenth. Includes the Chanson de Roland, Chrétien de Troyes, Roman de la Rose, and Villon.

FREN 520, 521 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Sixteenth Century

Studies important trends in French Renaissance thought and style as seen in major literary works, including the prose of Rabelais, Marguerite de Navarre, and Montaigne, or the poetry of the Rhétoriqueurs, the Lyon group, and the Pléiade.

FREN 530, 531 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Seventeenth Century

Studies art forms and society during the baroque and classical periods of French literary history. Readings in theater, fiction, rhetoric and poetry.

FREN 540, 541 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Eighteenth Century

FREN 540: studies religious, moral, and political thinking as reflected in the works of Bayle, Fontenelle, Montesquieu, Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot, and Helvetius.
FREN 541: studies developing trends in traditional genres (drama, novel, poetry) as reflected in the works of Le Sage, Marivaux, Beaumarchais, Diderot, Chénier, Voltaire, Prevost, and Rousseau.

FREN 550, 551 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Nineteenth Century

Studies realism, naturalism, and symbolism. Analyzes representative texts of Mme. de Staël, Chateaubriand, Constant, Lamartine, Hugo, Vigny, Musset, Nerval, Balzac, Flaubert, Stendhal, Zola, Huysmans, Maupassant, Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Verlaine, and Mallarmé.

FREN 560, 561 - (3) (Y)
Literature of the Twentieth Century

Analyzes principal literary movements and representative authors in the novel, drama, and poetry.

FREN 570 - (3) (IR)
African Literature

Studies the principal movements and representative authors writing in French in Northern, Central, and Western Africa, with special reference to the islands of Madagascar and Mauritius. Explores the literary and social histories of these regions.

FREN 571 - (3) (IR)
New World Literature

Introduces the French-language literatures of Canada and the Caribbean in their historical and esthetic context. Includes drama, fiction and poetry. FREN 571 or 570 are normally a prerequisite to advanced work in Francophone literature at the 800 level.

FREN 580 - (3) (Y)
Literature and Society

Studies French cultural manifestations (literature, arts, education, popular culture) from various socio-historical perspectives.

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