Made or Readymade? Found Objects in French Literature, Art and Film

R1B (Section 1) :  English Composition through French Literature in Translation
Spring 2019
V. Bergstrom


Course Description:

In this course, we will investigate the fact and fiction of “found objects” in literary and visual works. Through the epistolary novel (a novel written in the form of letters), we will consider why and to what effect authors frame their works as the work of others (the fiction of the found). Through French art of the early twentieth century, we will consider how everyday objects (newspaper, bicycle wheel, thermometer) make their way into painting and sculpture, and transform the notion of artistic medium. Finally, we will consider conventional and idiosyncratic uses of archival images and found footage in narrative, documentary, and experimental film. Guiding questions of this course will include: how does a framing device shape our approach to literary materials? how do found materials mingle with non-found (i.e. created) materials in literary and visual contexts? what kinds of (aesthetic, political, philosophical) meanings emerge from the juxtaposition of the made and the found?

This course focuses on literary and visual analysis and the composition of well-argued essays, building upon the skills learned in R1A. We will also be discussing how to conduct scholarly research on literary and historical topics, and how to use scholarly sources in academic writing. The writing process will be broken down into manageable components, including extensive rewriting and feedback, and we will practice different academic genres including the abstract, the annotated bibliography, and the research paper.

Additional Information:

French R1B satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement. Classes are conducted in ENGLISH



Section times and locations in the Schedule of Classes