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FREN 3500 Current Events in the French Speaking World: Conversation and Composition (Kilbane): FREN 3500

Course Description

This class will focus on the reading and discussion of current events in the French-speaking world. The content will consist of newspaper and magazine articles, radio and television broadcasts, background readings on contemporary France for contextualization, and films that address important issues in France today. The course will be conducted in French, with a focus on oral expression through conversation, and critical and personal reflection in compositions and journal writing.  This course counts toward the French major and minor and has a prerequisite of French 2120 or its equivalent.

French Election: Le Point photo by Lorie Shaull via Flickr

French Election: Le Point by Lorie Shaull. 8 May 2017. Used under CC BY-SA 2.0 license.

Assignment Details

For your final project you may choose to investigate any element of contemporary France, any current event in the news, using mostly periodical sources to learn about it. It is always a good idea to start with a question, and then explore that question through your project. 

To research and develop your topic, you should consult a minimum of TEN sources, including, if possible, at least one example of long-form journalism (an article of at least several pages, as opposed to the short internet articles that have been presented in class), that will more likely come from a magazine than from a newspaper.Here is a link to a Google search listing the major weekly magazines:

French Weekly Magazines

You can click on the title to get to its webpage, and go to its Wikipedia page to get a description of the magazine (including its political orientation). If you are still searching for a topic, you can visit these websites, read the headlines and see what you are interested in.

Course Resources

Your textbook is Alliages culturels: La Société française en transformation. The library typically does not buy textbooks; however, you can sometimes find them in our collections or borrow them via Prospector or Interlibrary Loan.

Films for the class include: 

Paris je t’aime (Various Directors, 2006)
Paris (Cédric Klapisch, 2008)
Bienvenue chez les ch’tis (Danny Boon, 2008)
Bande de filles (Céline Sciamma, 2014)
La Bataille d’Alger (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966)
Le Nom des gens (Michel Leclerc, 2010)
Les Intouchables (Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano, 2011)
Inch’Allah Dimanche (Yamina Benguigui, 2001)
La Haine (Mathieu Kassovitz, 1995)
Eden à l’ouest (Costa-Gavras, 2009)

Kanopy is one of the library subscription databases with streaming films (database links at the bottom of this section). The film(s) available for this class are available on this playlist:

Subject Librarian

Bronwen Maxson's picture
Bronwen Maxson
Bronwen K. Maxson
Norlin Library
1720 Pleasant Street | 184 UCB
303-492-3134 |


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