Courses available in French


Le soleil est rare et le bonheur aussi l'amour s'égare au long de la vie.


French Eighteenth Century French Literature: How To Say I Love You — The Comedies of Marivaux

Le triomphe de l’amour; Le jeu de l’amour; La fausse suivante; La double inconstance; La colonie; La dispute

Course Description:
After Molière, Marivaux is France’s greatest comic playwright, and the writer who did more than any other to psychologize the genre, to make it into an exploration of the internal obstacles that keep people apart. This class provides an introduction to Marivaux’s world. The center of our interest will be a select number of his plays–their language (the playwright introduced an entire way of speaking known as marivaudage) and their form (we will learn about the comedic conventions that Marivaux appropriates and twists). We will also research the social institution of the theater in Ancien Régime France, and read some studies that connect these apparently light romantic comedies with the deep social and subjective changes that characterize modernity. Finally, because these works were made for performance, and because there is no better way into their amazing French, we will devote time to staging as scene or two. (Care will be taken to make allowances for students’ preferences; everyone will be accommodated, and no acting experience is expected.) As part of our effort to bring the texts to life, we will also be viewing some filmed adaptations, as well the award-winning hit L’esquive (Kechiche, 2003), which transposes Marivaux to a banlieue high school in Saint-Denis.

French 102 or consent of Instructor. Course conducted in French.

Additional information:
This course satisfies one “Literature” or one “Elective” in the French major; satisfies one Historical Period requirement in French major. Satisfies L & S breadth requirement in Arts and Literature. Priority enrollment for declared French majors.

Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes