French Studies second year modules

Compulsory module

French language

(20 credits)

This linked module will be organised around a number of separate components: the weekly expression orale class with a native speaker will be structured around a variety of oral and aural tasks such as: oral presentation, debate and role-play. Part of this hour will be devoted to preparing students to gain full benefit from their period of residency abroad (where applicable). The weekly language class will focus primarily upon written skills: it will be divided into several teaching blocks where different writing styles and types of exercise will be introduced then reinforced and practiced. A series of lectures/workshops will be the focus for students working on vocabulary and grammar skills. There will be some laboratory sessions designed to enhance awareness and accuracy of sounds and intonation patterns.

Optional modules

French Cinema, Media and Visual Culture

(20 credits)

This module builds on knowledge about French cinema and skills in reading film introduced 1 in Year 1 by offering, in semester 1, an introduction to the main genres of French cinema (the fantastique/horror, heritage cinema, the thriller/polar and documentary). This is followed in Semester 2 by introduction to up to three other forms of visual culture taken from: visual art, photography, advertising and television/newspaper media (depending on staff availability). Films are prescribed in Semester 1, while in Semester 2 students are guided in the selection of paintings, photographs, advertisements and television/newspaper material as a corpus for their individual project.

La France Moderne 2

(20 credits)

Semester 1 provides an introduction to some of the key moments which have marked French history since the 1789 Revolution. The study of these episodes of historical importance places an emphasis on an underlying, but constantly challenged, republican tradition underpinning contemporary France. In the second semester, the theme of French national identity is examined more closely in a European and international context. Lectures and seminars examine the ways in which this identity has been constructed and the ways in which it has been maintained. All teaching is in French.

Politics, Culture & Society in the 19th and 20th Centuries

(20 credits)

This module will build on the student's knowledge of French history and politics gained in Year 1, through the examination of documents, visual images and literary texts from the revolutionary period to the mid-twentieth century.

Writing, Reacting, Adapting: Text and Context from Humanism to Realism

(20 credits)

Drawing on texts from the Renaissance period through to the development of the Realism in the nineteenth century, this module will provide an insight into the major movements and personalities that have shaped French literature and writing through the ages. In semester 1, students will study texts from the Renaissance period and the 17th and 18th centuries. In semester 2 we shall study texts which are representative of key literary movements such as Romanticism, Realism and Naturalism. Texts will be drawn from several genres, typically including drama, non-fictional works, poetry and prose.  The module will encourage students to explore how writers from different historical periods interacted with and responded to the political and social circumstances of their time. They will also be able to discover how some of these texts have been and continue to be adapted (e.g. film, stage performance etc.) to appeal to new audiences.

Text and Interpretation

(20 credits)

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 interpersonal practices that may be applied to them. It will build on the students' knowledge of narrative techniques, through the examination of a number of individual works.