French Comedy (FRE4122.01)

Stephen Shapiro

This course will examine the comic in French theatre, literature, politics, and film in order to answer a deceptively simple question: What makes us laugh? In theoretical readings we will consider whether laughter is a universal, cross-cultural function. Additionally, we will look at special, sub-genres of the comic, such as satire and parody, in order to question the relationship between comic genres and the real world. Does comedy seek to change the world or does it merely want to point to its foibles? Is it a progressive or conservative mode? What is its role in bringing about political, social, or even literary change and innovation? How does comedy intersect with discourse on gender, race, and sexuality? Advanced level. Conducted in French.


Learning Outcomes:
build your proficiency in spoken and written French.
to practice and perfect your spoken French in a formal setting
to progress in spontaneous, interactive communication.
developing the skills of advanced-level speakers:
mastery of narration in the present, past, and future,
narrating and describing in paragraph-level connected discourse
drawing hypotheses, defending opinions, and discussing abstract ideas.
Readings and written assignments will challenge you to enrich your vocabulary and develop an ease with increasingly complex syntactical structures.


Delivery Method: Remotely accessible
Prerequisites: Instrucor's permission required.
Corequisites: CSL speakers' series attendance.
Course Level: 4000-level
Credits: 4
M/Th 1:40PM - 3:30PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 18
Course Frequency: Every 2-3 years

Categories: All courses , French , Remotely Accessible
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