French Literature I
Cod: 51168
Department: DH
Scientific area: Literature
Total working hours: 156
Total contact time: 15

In this curricular unit the focus will be placed on romance, and on the role French Culture played in this field as a forerunner and a catalyzer. This unit aims at offering a global, integrated vision of French literature from a thematic, diachronic and poetic standpoint, and it endeavors to conciliate the analysis of some emblematic narratives of the main literary periods between the Middle Ages and the Enlightenment with the study of the kind of historic transformation such works reflect or anticipate.

French Literature (From Middle Ages to Eighteen Century)
Romance theory and evolution
French culture and civilization

By the end of the semester the student is expected to be able to:
- Acknowledge and characterize the principal instances and transformations of romance writing of the approached period, in France;
- Relate the fundamental references studied to their underlying cultural and epistemological changes;
- Adequate knowledge, methodologies and devices to the critical exploration of a narrative and the production of an essay.

I- The emergence of romance (12th and 13th centuries)

1. From Latin to romance: a new linguistic and poetic horizon
2. Knights and lovers: wandering as narrative form (comparative analysis of two romances of Chrétien de Troyes: Érec et Énide and Perceval ou Le Conte du Graal)

3. From verse to prose: a narrative looking for completion.
II – Poetics of romance and classic paradigm

1. The controversial status of romance (16tth-18th centuries)
2. Epistolary romances and novels: tradition and innovation (study of La Princesse de Clèves de Madame de Lafayette)
3. Romantic deconstruction (Scarron, Le Roman Comique)

III – The Enlightenment and anamorphous narratives

1. A new ideal of writing: poetic prose
2. The aesthetics of brevity: short stories (Voltaire) and philosophical dialogues (Study of Jacques le Fataliste by Diderot)
3. Stretching and disruption: (Choderlos de Laclos, Sade e Rousseau)

Poetic works
CHRETIEN DE TROYES, Érec et Énide, ed. bilingue D. Hult, Paris, LGF, 2000.
___________________, Le Conte du Graal ou de Roman de Perceval, ed. bilingue Charles Méla, Paris, Le Livre de Poche, col. «Lettres Gothiques», 1990.
VOLTAIRE, Candide, Paris, Petits Classiques Larousse, 2011.
LAFAYETTE, MADAME DE, La Princesse de Clèves, Paris, Folio Classique, 2000

Critical bibliography
CHARTIER, P., Introduction aux grandes théories du roman, Paris, Bordas, 1990.
COULET, H., Le Roman depuis les origines jusqu’à la Révolution, Paris, Armand Colin, 1975.
LABÈRE, Nelly, Littératures du Moyen Âge, Paris, PUF, 2009.

PRIGENT, M.; LESTRINGANT, F.; ZINK. M. (dir.), Histoire de la France Littéraire, tome I: Naissances-Renaissances, Moyen Âge-XVIe siècle, Paris, PUF, 2006.

PRIGENT, M.; DARMON, J.-Ch.; DELON, M. (dir.), Histoire de la France Littéraire, tome II: XVII-XVIIIe siècle, Paris, PUF, 2006.
RIBEIRO, Cristina Almeida; ABREU, Graça; MADUREIRA, Margarida, Literatura Francesa Clássica, Lisboa, Universidade Aberta, 1990.
STANESCO, M.,Lire le Moyen Âge, Paris, Dunot, col. Lire, 1998.
TATIN-GOURIER, J.-J., Lire les Lumières, Paris, Armand Colin, col. Lettres Supérieurs, 2005.


Continuous assessment is privileged: 2 digital written documents (e-folios) during the semester (40%) and a final digital test, Global e-folio (e-folio G) at the end of the semester (60%). In due time, students can alternatively choose to perform one final exam (100%).

Students are required to have access to a computer with Internet connection.