FCS 292H1S

Special Topics in French Cultural Studies I:Love, Sex and Desire in French Literature and Cinema


M.A. Visoi


This course will explore the themes of love, sex, and desire in French literature and cinema through close reading, analysis and interpretation of novels from the eighteenth to the twentieth century. A comparative approach based on various examples taken from literary, philosophical texts, and film adaptations will examine the concept of love and its many definitions. Selections from ancient and modern philosophical texts on love, sex, and desire will be the starting point of our discussions: Ovid, The Art of Love, Plato, Symposium, Bataille, Eroticism, Beauvoir, The Woman in Love, Foucault, The History of Sexuality. The course will be held in English and offered online only.

Required texts: Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, Dangerous Liaisons; Emile Zola, Nana; Marguerite Duras, The Lover, available from University of Toronto Libraries.

Course Textbook: M. Visoi, A Thematic Approach to French Cultural Studies: Love, Sex and Desire in French Literature and Cinema, Universal Publishers, 2012, available via Blackboard.

Films: Dangerous Liaisons (1988, Stephen Frears); The Lover (1992, Jean-Jacques Annaud), available from University of Toronto Libraries.

Assignments and evaluation: Online Cultural Essay (30%); Online Test (20%); Online Passage Analysis (10%); Online Final Essay (25%); Online Participation in forum sessions, Overall Assessment facilitated by Blackboard collaboration tools (15%).

Prerequisite: None