Bodies, Affects, Gender, and Aesthetics: Literary Depictions of Embodiment in Modern French Literature

140A :  French Literature in Translation
Fall 2022
Class No: 30750
209 Dwinelle
Alexis Stanley

What makes a literary depiction of the body “modern”? How have the expressive capacities and poetic potentials of the human body been rearticulated across diverse literary movements within the field of French literature? In this course, students will read several works associated with key developments in French literary history in order to examine relationships between textual descriptions of embodiment, the question of “modern” evolutions in literature, and the historical or socio-political contexts in which these innovations emerged. Course themes will include: the relationship between bodily affects and human psychology; morality and the pursuit of bodily pleasures; the body as a work of art; sexual and textual economies of the body; neurohumanities and bodily memory; bodily paradigms of gender and feminism.