French (FREN) 420

Poésie et théâtre français du 19e siècle (Revision 1)

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Humanities

Prerequisite: FREN 358 or other 3rd Year French Literature courses and professor approval.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

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FREN 420 is not available for challenge.

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FRENCH 420 is designed for students who intend to major in French or to graduate in Education with French as a teaching subject. This course is also vital to those who intend to pursue translation as a profession and those aspiring towards a higher degree (MA) in French Studies. It serves as an introduction to 19th-Century French poetry and theatre, through the study of (1) a substantial selection of the work of some traditionally well-known male poets, (2) the work of the hitherto little-known women poets, (3) a play chosen from the Romantic period On ne badine pas avec l’amour, which remains popular in contemporary France to this day, and (d) Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du mal. Baudelairewill be given prominence as a central figure in the evolution of 19th-Century French literary aesthetics, and as a precursor of French symbolist literature. What is particularly innovative about this course is the inclusion of women poets (most of whom have so far been excluded from courses in 19th- Century French literature). These women poets were not only contemporaries to, but indeed close literary associates of, some of the literary giants of 19th-Century France. The one play included in the course suffices to demonstrate the close relationship between poetry and drama in the Romantic period. FREN 358 is the normal pre-requisite for FREN 420.


FRENCH 420 is comprised of 17 lessons which are divided into 4 Modules, namely:

  • Module 1: Introduction au Romantisme (leçons 1-5)
  • Module 2 : Les femmes poètes (leçons 6-9)
  • Module 3 : Le Théâtre romantique (leçons 10-13)
  • Module 4 : Charles Baudelaire (leçons 14-17)
  • Appendice


To receive credit for FREN 420, you must achieve a course composite grade of at least a “D” (50 percent). You must achieve a minimum grade of 50 percent the Final examination. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Assign. 1 Assign. 2 Assign. 3 Assign. 4 Final Exam Total
10% 10% 15% 15% 50% 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


On ne badine pas avec l’amour by Alfred de Musset.

Les Fleurs du Mal by Charles Baudelaire.

Study Guide (developed by Dr. Joseph Nnadi)

Student Manual (developed by Dr. Joseph Nnadi and Dr. Vina Tirven-Gadum)

Other Materials

Most of the course materials for FREN 420 are available online through the myAU portal. There are also print materials, 2 textbooks, a study guide and a student manual, and these will be sent to you before your course start date.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 1, March 8, 2010.

Updated May 12 2016 by SAS