Winter 2024 Courses

Winter 2024 Courses

Language Courses

FRE 001-003: Elementary French
FRE 021-023: Intermediate French

See Placement Guide or Catalog Descriptions

Undergraduate Courses

FRE 105: Advanced French Grammar
Prof. Julia Simon

FRE 108: Modern French Culture
Prof. Jeff Fort

TR 12:10-1:30 Olson 141 This course provides a survey of modern French culture and history from the late nineteenth century (especially the Dreyfus affair) to the post-WWII era, with an emphasis on the cultural and political crises and shifts that marked this hundred year period. We will examine major historical conflicts including World War I, World War II and the German Occupation, the Algerian War of Independence, the advent of the Fifth Republic, and the student and worker uprisings of May 1968. Course material will include historical documents, journalism, essays, photography, paintings, and films. Course work will include multiple writing assignments, a research project, in-class presentations, and a final exam.

FRE 130: French Theatre

Graduate Courses

FRE 201: History of French
Prof. Eric Russell

This seminar is intended to frame two scholarly moments: one, an exploration of the social history of the French language, especially focusing on the emergence and cohesion of this as an anthropological and epistemological ideation; and two, an unraveling of the socio-cultural forces that served to construct this episteme and to promote this cohesion, frequently at the expense of other language communities and their cultures/practices. We will interrogate how French emerged and came to take its cultural, political, and linguistic form, and how this trajectory can help us understand contemporary issues surrounding language in society, more broadly.

Rather than only concentrate on dates and events in the history of French (we will also do this, if only as a type of baseline), we will interrogate historical pathways and outcomes as intrinsically bound up in extra-linguistic power structures and cultural institutions. The readings of this class reflect our dual objectives: Lodge will serve as a reference and jumping off point for the discussion of historical moments, allowing us to describe language within and across historical moments with appropriate terminology and concepts; Heller & McElhinney will frame our examination and re-examination of how such moments and the forces contributing to them can be critically interrogated and the power structures contributing to them made clearer. 

A tertiary, but equally important objective is the development of disciplinary writing practices. All students will be expected to contribute a term paper in which they delimit a question of sociolinguistic historic significance: this requires them to present basic diachronic facts, articulate a critical argument within the scope of the seminar and readings, frame a cogent argument pertaining to the political and social significance of the moment/moments in question, as well as relevant actors and forces, and engage with this in a way that reflects appropriate disciplinary postures. This is intended to give students practical experience with the type of scholarship undertaken in the course, while also providing a chance to hone writing skills and develop solid scholarly habits. 

 At the end of the quarter, you should know/understand better:

-       The ways in which language status and function can be described; how these statuses and functions have changed in the context of French over time
       The ways in which language is both used as an expression of social power and how it is shaped by this power; how this applies to the case of French and language(s) in the Francophone space

-       The ways in which language is imbued with ideology and simultaneously serves ideological constructs; how the history of the French language (broadly speaking) can be understood in socio-constructive manners

 By the end of the quarter, you should be able to:

-       Describe French and the languages of Francophone spaces (social, geographic, cultural) in terms of their statuses, functions, and socio-cultural construction
-       Critically engage with the historicity of changes pertinent to these conceptualizations of both French and other languages
-       Articulate a cogent argument, in which you engage with concepts and theories to develop a reasoned approach to the understanding of a particular facet of French (or another language), in a particular space, at a particular time.

FRE 390B: Teaching French
Carmen Mayer