Spring 2024 Courses


for meeting times and locations please consult yale course search


Conducted entirely in French


Conducted entirely in French

fren 120: elementary and intermediate french ii

Continuation of FREN 110. Open only to students who took FREN 110 (L1) at Yale.  

Please note: FREN 110 and FREN 121 is only offered in the Fall. 
french 130:  intermediate and advanced french i

The first half of a two-term sequence designed to develop students’ proficiency in the four language skill areas. Prepares students for further work in literary, language, and cultural studies, as well as for nonacademic use of French. Oral communication skills, writing practice, vocabulary expansion, and a comprehensive review of fundamental grammatical structures are integrated with the study of short stories, novels, and films. 

french 140: intermediate and advanced french ii

The second half of a two-term sequence designed to develop students’ proficiency in the four language skill areas. Introduction of more complex grammatical structures. Films and other authentic media accompany literary readings from throughout the francophone world, culminating with the reading of a longer novel and in-class presentation of student research projects. 

french 145: intensive intermediate and advanced french

An accelerated course that covers in one term the material taught in FREN 130 and 140. Emphasis on speaking, writing, and the conversion of grammatical knowledge into reading competence. 

french 150: advanced language practice

An advanced language course intended to improve students’ comprehension of spoken and written French as well as their speaking and writing skills. Modern fiction and nonfiction texts familiarize students with idiomatic French. Special attention to grammar review and vocabulary acquisition.


Gateway courses

fren 160: advanced conversation through culture, film, and media

Intensive oral practice designed to further skills in listening comprehension, speaking, and reading through the use of videos, films, fiction, and articles. Emphasis on contemporary French and francophone cultures. Prerequisites: FREN 150, or a satisfactory placement test score, or with permission of the course director. May be taken concurrently with or after FREN 170. Conducted in French.

fren 170: introduction to the study of literature in french

Introduction to close reading and analysis of literary texts written in French. Works by authors such as Marie de France, Molière, Balzac, Hugo, Baudelaire, Duras, Proust, and Genet. Conducted in French.

Advanced Language Courses

fren 182: Advanced Writing Workshop (lauren pinzka)

An advanced writing course for students who wish to work intensively on perfecting their written French. Frequent compositions of varying lengths, including creative writing, rédactions (compositions on concrete topics), and dissertations (critical essays). Recommended for prospective majors.

Conducted entirely in French. After FREN 150 or higher, or a satisfactory placement test score. May be taken after courses in the 200–449 range.

fren 184: business french: communication and culture (léo tertrain)

An advanced language course emphasizing verbal communication and culture.  Designed to foster the acquisition of the linguistic and cultural skills required to evolve within a French business environment.  Discussions, in-class activities and group projects in simulated professional situations.  Topics such as the liberalization of the French economy, trading in the European Union, new forms of business organizations, globalization are explored through a business textbook, articles, video clips, radio shows, films, documentaries, and excerpts from essays and literary texts.  Conducted in French.

fren 192: intermediate literary translation (nichole Gleisner)

A continuation of FREN 191 for students who wish to work on a longer project and to deepen their reading in translation theory. Conducted in English, readings in French.

General Fields Courses

fren 240: The modern french novel (alice kaplan and maurice samuels)

A survey of major French novels, considering style and story, literary and intellectual movements, and historical contexts. Writers include Balzac, Flaubert, Proust, Camus, and Sartre. Readings in translation. One section conducted in French.

fren 307: France by Rail: Trains in French Literature, Film, and History (morgane cadieu)

Exploration of the aesthetics of trains in French and Francophone literature and culture, from the end of the nineteenth-century and the first locomotives, to the automatically driven subway in twenty-first century Paris. Focus on the role of trains in industrialization, colonization, deportation, decolonization, and immigration. Corpus includes novels, poems, plays, films, paintings, graphic novels, as well as theoretical excerpts on urban spaces and public transportation. Activities include: building a train at the CEID and visiting the Beinecke collections and the Art Gallery.

Special Topics Courses

fren 355: Camus’s war  (alice kaplan)

The literary and political career of French-Algerian writer Albert Camus (1913–60). His major novels and essays read both from a stylistic point of view and in the context of World War II, the Algerian War, and debates over terrorism, the death penalty, and humanitarianism. Class taught in French; readings and assignments in French.

fren 385: Reading Rabelais’s Gargantua (Dominique brancher)

How should the modern man be educated? Which virtues should a Christian prince possess in times of war? Can you be serious and funny at the same time? Gargantua, the life-story of a giant born from his mother’s ear, published two years after Pantagruel in 1534, has surprising answers to these questions and more. It is with this work of excess, in form as much as in content, in which giants consume material and spiritual goods with equal enthusiasm, and in which received ideas are subject to harsh critical and comic scrutiny, that Rabelais invents the modern novel. Students undertake a close reading of the text in its modern French translation, alongside relevant secondary sources. All readings, discussions, and assignments in French.

fren 403: Proust: Remembrance of Things Past (r howard bloch/pierre saint-amand)

A close reading (in English) of Marcel Proust’s masterpiece, Remembrance of Things Past, with emphasis upon major themes: time and memory, desire and jealousy, social life and artistic experience, sexual identity and personal authenticity, class and nation. Portions from Swann’s WayWithin a Budding GroveCities of the PlainTime Regained considered from biographical, psychological/psychoanalytic, gender, sociological, historical, and philosophical perspectives.

FREN 425: North African French Poetry (thomas connolly)

Introduction to North African poetry composed in French during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Works explored within the broader context of metropolitan French, Arabic, and Berber cultures; juxtaposition with other modes of expression including oral poetry, painting, dance, music, the Internet, and film. The literary, aesthetic, political, religious, and philosophical significance of poetic discourse.