Courses available in French


Il ne faut jamais avoir peur d'aller trop loin car la vérité est au-delà.


French 183A: Configurations of Crisis — Cultural Representations of Asylum in France


Didier Fassin: La Raison humanitaire, Eric Emmanuel Schmidt: Ulysse from Baghdad, Shumona Sinha, Assommons les pauvres!, Marie Cosnay: Entre Chagrin et Néant, Marie Ndiaye: Trois femmes puissantes, Bienvenue! 34 auteurs pour les réfugiés

Films: Welcome, Les Arrivants, Dheepan, Playground, Hotel Problemski, Illegal

Course Description:

This course investigates the itineraries and narratives of refugees who are seeking asylum in France today. Contemporary fiction and film will help us reconstruct aspects of a refugee’s flight from unlivable conditions and chart their perilous journey across land and sea into France. We will pay particular attention to the forms of personhood that emerge or are put into crisis by such experiences as clandestine passage, detention, surveillance and deportation, the stages of an asylum application, undocumented labor, etc. We will also consider the importance of narrative in organizing histories and selves in ways that are audible and visible for their place of sanctuary. These questions are pursued through readings of literature, cinema, testimony, theory and the press.


French 102 or consent of instructor.

Additional information: 

This course satisfies 1 “Culture” or 1  “Elective” course requirement in the French major.   This course also satisfies College of Letters and Science breadth in Social and Behavioral Sciences or Historical Studies. Priority enrollment for declared French majors.

Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes