FREN 104. Honors Seminar: La littérature et les sciences de la vie au 19e siècle

This course will explore the 19th-century French novel's manifold engagement with contemporaneous life sciences in order to track how the literary practices of the period were shaped by the century's rapidly shifting biological paradigms. The course material is threefold: 1) it will consider primary sources of 19-century life sciences (from Jean-Baptiste de Lamarck's early evolutionary model of transformism, to Claude Bernard's experimental physiology, to Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection); 2) it will draw from a collection of novelists, all of whom made extensive implicit and explicit references to the sciences of their day (texts by Saint-Pierre, Sand, Balzac, Zola, Rachilde, and Flaubert); and 3) it will rely upon a wide range of critical lenses coming from present-day scholarship in ecocriticism/ecofeminism, animal studies, postmodern philosophy, and critical histories of science (excerpts of texts by Foucault, Deleuze, Haraway, Latour, Thiher, and Weil). Taught in French.
Prerequisite: Advanced content course in French or instructor's approval.
2 credits.
Fall 2022. Robison.
Catalog chapter: Modern Languages and Literatures: French and Francophone Studies  
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