French Courses - Fall


The French Language Program offers teachers the opportunity to improve their skills, earn credit for professional development or continuing education, or qualify for a three-year MAT degree program. Teachers interested in joining the MAT program in French may apply after successful completion of two French courses in the World Languages Institute. The MAT program, which requires thirty credits of course work in French methodology, language, culture, or literature, is designed primarily for individuals already teaching French. These courses may be accepted for state certification. Details of the MAT program are available at the Department of French or its web site at

FALL 2017

Additional Course Offerings: See Core Curriculum

W, 4:30 PM - 7:10 PM; AB-4190

For centuries, if not millennia, literary representations of animals have had one thing in common: their not being about animals. The creatures that run, crawl or fly across fables, tales and bestiaries hardly ever stand for themselves, but for humans, whose qualities they either symbolize or are shown lacking. Just as philosophers who denied animals a soul, writers have consistently failed to answer the question “what is it to be human?” without denigrating other species. In recent years, however, for a variety of reasons that this course will examine, thinkers from all horizons have addressed this failure and dismissed the dualism between humanity and animality as fallacious and ethically intolerable. This course proposes to analyze this shift in 20th and 21st century French fiction. Pondering over the extinction of the orangutan or the monarch butterfly, envisioning a world taken over by ants or winged humans, imagining life in Paris with a python, or what it means to kill your husband’s cat, the writers we will study have redefined the relationship between human and nonhuman animals in fresh (and often humorous) terms. We will discuss their contribution to some of the most central debates in animal studies (on species extinction, hybridity, animal rights, anthropomorphism, and pets), as well as literature’s value as a unique way to recognize the nonhuman animal.

T, 4:30 PM - 7:10 PM; AB-4190

In recent years debate about the place of Islam and Muslims in France has grown ever more intense and polarizing. In this course we will read works (mostly, but not exclusively, novels) that reimagine French-Muslim encounters of the past, ponder French-Muslim encounters of the present, and, most importantly, imagine French-Muslim encounters of the future. Our focus will be on the rhetorical strategies of the authors within the context of the history of France and Islam. All readings in French, class discussion conducted in French and English.

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