Courses available in French


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


French 116A: Sixteenth-Century French Literature — Love Poetry in a Time of War (Session D — second 6-week session)

Course Description:

In the sixteenth century, France was shaken by religious wars.  At the same time, the country witnessed the birth of a distinctly national literature and the triumph of numerous poetic schools.   Why is that, at a time of political and religious turmoil, the French letters experienced a proliferation of poetic forms?  In this course, we will study France’s literary Renaissance (or rebirth) through the key representatives of its poetic expression.  We will study poetry in context, tracing its ability to both reflect and shape the key aesthetic and cultural tendencies of the time.  The following questions will be relevant for us: Why did the Renaissance writers turn to poetry in particular? In what ways did the diverse poetic forms such as a sonnet, an ode, a hymn, a ballad, or a rondeau account for such range of attitudes and experiences as love, marriage, imperial power, national pride, war, religious freedom, one’s reflections on the past and the passage of time?  Which roles did women hold, not only as sources of inspiration, but as poets themselves, or as political figures and art patrons?

Readings will include texts by Clément Marot, Ronsard, Du Bellay, d’Aubigné, Louise Labé.  We will also screen one film: Patrice Chéreau’s La Reine Margot (1994).

Course conducted in French.


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Prerequisites: French 102 or consent of Instructor.

Additional information: This course satisfies one “Literature of a Century” or one “Elective”  course requirement in the French major.   Course also satisfies one Historical Period Requirement in French Major.  Satisfies College of Letters and Science breadth in Arts and Literature.



Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes