Professors: Jacobus, Kruger (Chair)
Associate Professors: Fache
Visiting Assistant Professors: Beschea, Sainte-Claire, Stern
Foreign Language Requirement
Completion of French 201 meets the foreign language requirement for the degree.
Students with prior work in French must take a placement test to assess their language proficiency. Using the results of the placement exam (which tests reading and listening skills) and the high school record, the department places the student at the appropriate level.
Students can satisfy the language requirement by high achievement on the placement exam AND an oral interview in French with a member of the Department of French and Francophone Studies. Students continuing in French should enroll in the course indicated by their placement test results.
Cultural Diversity Requirement
French 366 and 368 are options for fulfilling the cultural diversity requirement.
The department strongly encourages all students, especially departmental majors and minors, to study abroad for a minimum of one semester. Davidson’s own program is located in Tours where students may spend an academic year or either the fall or spring semester (see section on Study Abroad for more details). Students participating in non-Davidson foreign-study programs must secure advance approval from the department for credit toward the major.
Major Requirements (A.B. Degree)
No French course taken Pass/Fail at Davidson may count towards the major in French and Francophone Studies.
Ten French courses numbered above 201, and including:
- French 313 “Advanced Grammar” or the equivalent;
- a course in the 220-229 “Introduction to Literature” series or the equivalent;
- French 260 “Contemporary France” or the equivalent;
- one course in the 320-349 series, one in the 360-369 series, and a third 300-level course in addition to FRE 313.
- 490 (Senior Seminar);
- 491 or 499 (Senior Thesis or Honors Thesis).
- Note 1: In addition to 490 and 491 (or 499), senior majors are required to take a third course in the department during the senior year.
Note 2: We encourage majors to take one course in French or Francophone studies offered by other departments. With approval of the French and Francophone Studies Department, one such course may be included as one of the ten required for the major. Examples include HIS 228 and HIS 328.
In the spring semester of their senior year, French majors write a thesis in French based on a personal reading program developed with the help of a faculty adviser. The reading program may be organized around a literary theme, genre, or movement, as well as a particular author or a civilization topic. Recent topics (translated for convenience) include: “Leonardo da Vinci and the Romorantin Project,” “The Use of Torture in the Algerian Conflict,” “Images of Homelessness in French Literature,” “Persepolis and the Graphic Novel,” and “The Stolen Children of La Réunion.”
No course taken Pass/Fail on the Davidson campus will count towards the minor in French and Francophone Studies.
Six courses numbered above 201, and including: Introduction to French Literature (220-229, or the equivalent), a course in French culture or civilization (260, 360-369, or the equivalent), and four additional courses beyond 201 in French language, literature, and/or civilization, at least one of which must be at the 300 level. At least two of the six courses must be taken in residence, one of these must be at the 300 level, with the provision that FRE 313 cannot be the sole 300-level course.
Candidates for Honors in French and Francophone Studies must have (or expect to have) a 3.5 GPA in French courses and a 3.2 GPA overall by the end of their junior year.
By the end of the spring semester of junior year (Monday, May 16, 2016), candidates for Honors must submit to the Chair of the department a one-page proposal, written in French, on a topic they have already researched. The proposal includes a working title and a preliminary bibliography with primary and secondary sources.
At the same time (Monday, May 16, 2016) candidates for Honors must submit an original writing sample on a topic that will be provided by the Chair of the department (maximum: 2 pages in French; time limit: 2 hours).
Once the Department has approved the proposal, candidates start working on their Honors thesis in consultation with their adviser in the fall of their senior year. If they change thesis topics during the fall of their senior year, candidates must write a regular thesis rather than an Honors thesis.
A section of the written project (approximately 8 to 10 pages, or, for example, one chapter) must be submitted to the thesis committee by Reading Day of the fall semester).
In the fall semester of their senior year, candidates take the Senior Seminar (FRE 490) with the other French and Francophone Studies majors, in which they must receive at least a B+. In the spring semester of the senior year, candidates for Honors register for FRE 499. Their complete Honors theses are submitted to their thesis advisers by April 10. After necessary revisions, but before the end of April (Date TBA), the theses are submitted to the other readers on the Honors thesis committees. Candidates then have an oral defense in French before their departmental thesis committee in early May. Thesis director and readers vote on whether Honors shall be awarded.
In the case of an exceptional academic record, together with a thesis of the highest quality, the department may confer high honors.
French and Francophone Studies Courses
Guidelines for selecting courses beyond the intermediate level.
The minimum requirement for courses numbered 212 or above is French 201or an appropriate placement score. Students who have completed 201 or the equivalent may enroll in any course numbered 212-229 or 260, regardless of sequence in numbering. For help in matching literature, civilization, and advanced language courses to linguistic skills and interests, students are strongly encouraged to consult with any member of the French and Francophone Studies Department.
Introductory Courses in Literature (220-229).
All Introductory Literature courses (numbered 220-229) satisfy Distribution Requirement in Literary Studies, Creative Writing, and Rhetoric.
Dual Listed Literature Course
Introductory Courses in Civilization
Advanced Courses (All 300 level courses have the same level of difficulty.)
Completion of a course numbered 220 or above is normally required for enrollment in a course numbered 300 or above.
- AFR 266 - Africa Shoots Back, in transl. (=FRE 366)
- FRE 320 - Husbands, Wives, and Lovers
- FRE 321 - Autobiographies, Journals, Diaries (=FRE 242)
- FRE 329 - Studies in the Novel: Body Politics in Francophone Fiction (Spring 2018)
- FRE 335 - French Colonial Empire
- FRE 340 - Symbolist Poets: Drugs, Music, Revolt
- FRE 341 - Poetry, Passion, Painting
- FRE 343 - Cubist and Surrealist Poets
- FRE 360 - Québec Through Film
- FRE 363 - Québec: Literature, Society, and Culture
- FRE 364 - Paris Noir
- FRE 366 - Africa Shoots Back, in transl. (=AFR 266)
- FRE 368 - France and Métissage