Courses available in French


Il ne faut jamais avoir peur d’aller trop loin car la vĂ©ritĂ© est au-delĂ .

— Proust

French 112A : Medieval French Literature


The Chanson de Roland, ed. Short (ISBN 2-253-05341-4); Tristan et Iseut, ed. Walter (ISBN 2-253-05085-7); Chretien de Troyes, Le Chevalier de la Charette, Le Chevalier au Lion and Kibler, Introduction to Old French.

Course Description:

The subject of this course is the most creative period of medieval literature, in which the epic still flourished but courtliness and the romance were born. Among the topics will be oral tradition, the chanson de geste, the troubadours of southern France and the rise of courtliness, the women troubadours, the values of courtly society, the invention of romantic love, adultery and faithfulness, the transmission of Celtic themes in the matière de Bretagne, the legends of King Arthur, Lancelot and Guinevere, Tristan and Iseut, as well as medieval manuscripts (including a session viewing manuscripts in the Bancroft Library). Most of the texts will be read in modern French, but instruction in the Old French language will be an important component of the class and key passages will be read in their original linguistic form.


French 102 or consent of instructor.

Additional Information:

Knowledge of Old French not required; readings in modern French translation. This course satisfies 1 French Major course requirement in the “Literature” (112-120) category or 1 French Major course requirement in the Elective category. This course also satisfies 1 Historical Period Requirement in the French major. Priority enrollment for declared French majors.  Satisfies College of Letters and Science breadth in Arts and Literature.


Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes