Module information for incoming Erasmus and Exchange students interested in modules in French Studies.

Language modules for non-native speakers of French

French language modules are offered by Languages for All. Search for these modules via the Study Abroad and Exchange module catalogue tab on your left, then ‘Selecting modules’ then ‘Module by Department’ then ‘Languages for All’.

Language Module for Erasmus and Exchange students originating from France and French-speaking countries

Translation, Comprehension and Civilisation (20 credits)  26106/07 Semesters one and two

The Translation, Comprehension and Civilisation course (formerly known as ‘French Language skills’)  offered in the French section of the Department of Modern Languages, is compulsory for all LLCE, LEA and Lettres modernes Erasmus students coming from exchange universities in France and francophone countries.

Assessment: Coursework (translation French into English and English into French and summary into English), oral presentation and 2-hour translation exam.

Non-Language French Studies Modules for Erasmus students

The following courses taught by the French section of the Department of Modern Languages (or by the Department of Art History) are offered to degree (licence) level Erasmus and exchange students.

Masters level Erasmus students may opt to do any of these courses but may also elect to choose from additional 4th-year level courses (see rubric at the end of this list).

French Cinema, Media and Visual Culture (20 credits) 24262 Semesters one and two

This module assumes some knowledge about French cinema and skills in reading film. It offers, in Semester 1, a full introduction to one of the most important movements in twentieth-century French cinema: the Nouvelle Vague (New Wave). This is followed in Semester 2 by introduction to the analysis and study of up to three other forms of visual culture: photography, visual arts, advertising, film and television (depending on staff availability). Films are prescribed in Semester 1, while in Semester 2 students are guided in the selection of photographs, visual art, print advertisements, television material and films as a corpus for their individual project.

Assessment: One 2-hour class test. (50%) One individual guided project in English (2,500-3,000 words), submitted after Semester 2. (50%)

Renaissance to Realism (20 credits) 20991 Semesters one and two

This course studies selected literary works from the 16th to the 19th century, putting them into their historical, literary and intellectual context, examining authorial perspective and style, and analysing compositional techniques, thematic and narrative structure, and critical/representational objective.

Assessment: One essay/commentary in English, for submission after Semester 1 (50%). One 2-hour written examination in English in the Semester 2 examination period (50%)

La France moderne 2 (20 credits) : 26084 Semesters one and two

This course will not be relevant to students coming from France.

This course looks at the Republican tradition in France from 1789 to the present day, examining key historical moments in the evolution of that tradition such as abolition of slavery, the Dreyfus Affair, the emancipation of women, Vichy and the Resistance and the Algerian War.

Assessment: One 2-hour written examination (written in French) (100%)

Politics Culture and Society in 19th- and 20th-century France (20 credits) 12062/63 Semesters one and two

This module assumes a basic knowledge of French history and politics. It examines documents, visual images and literary texts from the revolutionary period to the mid-twentieth century.

Assessment: One assessed essay in English of 2,000 words (50%). One 2-hour written examination (50%)

French Text and Interpretation (20 credits) 24261 Semesters one and two

This module will introduce students to a range of 17th-century to 20th-century French narrative texts (literary and visual), and will familiarise them with a range of interpretational practices that may be applied to them.

Assessment: One critical commentary in English to be done as coursework in December within a specified period of a week (50%). One assessed essay in English of 2,000 words (50%)

Conflict, Identity and Absurdity in 20th-century French Theatre (20 credits) 25914  Semesters one and two

This module provides a theoretical and historical framework for understanding how French plays reflect and comment on the events, currents of thought and debates of their time. Six core plays by important playwrights (Cocteau, Sartre, Ionesco, Beckett, Anouilh and Vinaver) are then considered.

Assessment: One 2,000-word essay in English and one 2-hour exam

Impressionism and after: an Introduction to Art and Society in late nineteenth-century France (10 credits) 26712, lecture only, Semester 2 only

This module taught by the Department of Art History, Film and Visual Studies, will consider images, techniques and practices by leading innovative artists of the period such as Cassatt, Morisot, Manet, Degas, Seurat, Gauguin, Van Gogh and Cezanne. It will analyse key critical categories (including Impressionism, Neo-Impressionism and Symbolism) and key genres (including landscape painting, the painting of modern life, the nude) whilst linking art and the making of art to a broader visual and institutional culture. Finally, by analysing representation in relation to the key themes of gender, class and ethnicity the module will locate artistic practice within the socio-political terrain of the period.

Behind the Camera: Introduction to Women’s Cinema from the 1960s to the present (10 credits). 26041 Semester 2 only, lecture only.

This module taught by the Department of Art History, Film, and Visual Studies, offers an introduction to ‘women’s cinema’ (films directed by women) from the 1960s to the present. Focusing on French, Belgian and British films directed by Agnès Varda, Chantal Akerman, Sally Potter, Claire Denis, Lynne Ramsay and Andrea Arnold, they will cover a range of topics such as: - remove gap before colon 1970s feminist cinema, theory and criticism; experimental cinema; gender and postcolonialism in film; the performance of self and body and documentary and adaptation.

Two modules offered by the Department of Modern Languages may also be of interest to Erasmus students interested in French and France:

Tandem module

See Languages for All via the module catalogue, 10 credits (1 Semester) or 20 credits (Semesters one and two).

Erasmus module: Foreign Language Assistant Training LH 25142 - 20 credits Semesters one and two

For suitable applicants interested in acquiring experience of teaching in schools. To be selected, apply in advance to Mrs Gavrois ( or Dr Whittle (

Masters Level Erasmus students only

Masters level Erasmus students may choose from a further list of specialist options in French. These vary from year to year and places are often limited. Please ask which modules are available when you arrive in Birmingham or get in touch with Erasmus tutor in advance.

The following module taught by the Department of Art History, Film and Visual Culture is also available to 3rd Year Licence or Masters Level Erasmus/Exchange students:

LH Paris Moderne 1850-1930: Image, Concept, Femininity (Code To Be Confirmed)

20 credits, lecture and seminar, Semester 1

The centrality of Paris to the development of modern art is well established and Paris itself has taken on something of a mythical status in histories of modernity. This module explores from an interdisciplinary perspective the emergence and development of Paris between 1850 and 1930 as the focus of modernist cultural activity. Looking at the changing fabric, image and concept of the city, this module investigates ways in which Paris was experienced, conceptualised, made and represented by artists, photographers, urban planners, architects, designers and writers from Émile Zola and Édouard Manet to Eugène Atget, Sonia Delaunay and Walter Benjamin. Moreover, it will consider the significance to contemporaneous and subsequent practitioners of the making of modern Paris in relation the feminine - a city of capital, consumption, seduction, pleasure and the Parisienne. This module is designed to encourage students to understand the making of Paris moderne from a multiplicity of cultural, historical and theoretical perspectives. So, rather than treating the image and fabric of Paris as self-sufficient entities, students will be encouraged also to engage directly with representations of the city in literary and theoretical texts. Topics include: the social, artistic and literary impact and legacy of Haussmannisation; fashioning the Parisienne; poster art and commercialised leisure; exhibiting Paris; Surrealists in the city.

Erasmus and Exchange students coming to Birmingham for 1 Semester only should contact the Erasmus tutor in advance when choosing their modules. Alternative versions of some of the above modules may be available to them on a 10-credits, 1 semester only basis.

For further information contact:

Until 30 September 2015:  Dr Béatrice Damamme-Gilbert, Tel: +44 (0)121 414 5969, Email:

From 1 September 2015: Dr Sarah Fishwick, Tel: +44 (0)121 414 5977, Email:

Erasmus students attached to Modern languages and coming from France or francophone countries must attend the important welcome meeting on Wednesday 23 September 2015 at 14:00, Room number to be confirmed.