Courses available in French


Mon ultime prière: Ô mon corps, fais de moi toujours un homme qui interroge!

— Fanon

French 201: History of the French Language


Ayres-Bennett, Wendy (1996) A History of the French Language through Texts, London-New York: Routledge.

Recommended Readings:

Rickard, P. (1974, 1989) A History of the French Language, London: Hutchinson & Co; Battye, A.

M.-A. Hintze with P. Rowlett (2000) The French Language Today, London-New York: Routledge.

Course Description: 

This course covers the history of the French language from its Latin roots through to contemporary usage. Both internal and external History will be considered so that students acquire a firm grounding in the linguistic evolution of the language, coupled with an understanding of its development in relation to a range of social and cultural phenomena. Particular attention will be paid, for example, to the question of standardisation, and to attitudes towards the French language in the sixteenth-, seventeenth-, eighteenth- and twentieth-centuries. The internal history of the language involves the development of the phonology, morphology, syntax and lexis of French. The course will be structured around our analysis of the wide range of texts presented in Ayres-Bennett (1996) that date from 842 CE to the present day.

Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes