Literature – Advanced B2

Format: Online
Type: Culture & Literature
Level: Advanced B2
11 weeks: Jan 11–Mar 29

Read classic and contemporary writing in French! Books and themes change each session—view below.

Literature makes a major contribution to a nation’s cultural heritage and exposure to authentic written texts is one of the many ways foreign language learners can improve their language proficiency. In this course, discover classic and contemporary French and Francophone literature through the analysis and discussion of major literary works, either focusing on one text or on a specific theme woven through a variety of texts. This course is designed for literature lovers who would like to learn about the history of literature, of French expression, and to become more independent in reading challenging texts in their original French language.

  • ONLINE B1.LIT.E01(I) (Level B1/B2) - 5 Weeks - Fri 10am–11:30am- Jan 12-Feb 9 - H.Fortin

    La Gloire de mon père de Marcel Pagnol

    Marcel Pagnol (1895-1974) started his literary career late in life after having worked as a playwright, a screenwriter, and a movie director. In 1957, he started writing his autobiography and the first book, La Gloire de mon père, was published the same year. It became a huge success and is still considered as a classic of French literature.

    The book focuses on Marcel Pagnol’s childhood in Marseille and his vacation in the village of La Treille with his family. Filled with funny memories and vivid portraits of people living around him, the book delves into the quintessential and picturesque Provence with its lively charm, sunny landscapes, and refreshing characters. A perfect winter reading!

    In this class we will focus on learning and strengthening your French by reading (in class and at home), understanding, exploring vocabulary and grammar, and discussing the themes of the story. An average of 40 pages will be read each week.

    This class will interest you if you want to keep learning French by reading a classic of 20th century French literature and if you want to discover the sunny and refreshing world of Marcel Pagnol.

  • ONLINE B1.LIT.E02(I) (Level B1/B2) - 5 Weeks - Wed 5:45pm–7:15pm - Jan 13-Feb 10 - H.Fortin

    Extension du domaine de la lutte de Michel Houellebecq (explicit language)

    In 1994, Michel Houellebecq published Extension du domaine de la lutte and immediately became one of the most promising French authors of his generation. His literary career has since made him one of the most translated, popular, and polemical French contemporary authors.

    The protagonist of the book lives a solitary life and has not had sex for years because of his lack of charm and beauty. He is an average man and lives an average life. From banal conversations at the coffee machine to his observations of social life, the book is a journey of disenchantment. The story of this depressed and isolated man, told through his monologues and adventures, is a strong critique of modern society, obsessed with sex, money, and success. Beside its pessimistic yet funny point of view, the book is now considered as one of the most devastating satires of our time!

    In this class we will focus on learning and strengthening your French by reading (in class and at home), understanding, exploring vocabulary and grammar, and discussing the themes of the story. An average of 30 pages will be read each week.

    This class will interest you if you want to keep learning French by reading a classic of 20th century French Literature and if you want to discover Michel Houellebecq, considered one of the best – and most polemical – French writers.

  • ONLINE B1.LIT.E11(II) (Level B1/B2) - 5 Weeks - Fri 10am–11:30am - Feb 23-Mar 23 - H.Fortin

    Extension du domaine de la lutte de Michel Houellebecq (explicit language)

    In 1994, Michel Houellebecq published Extension du domaine de la lutte and immediately became one of the most promising French authors of his generation. His literary career has since made him one of the most translated, popular, and polemical French contemporary authors.

    The protagonist of the book lives a solitary life and has not had sex for years because of his lack of charm and beauty. He is an average man and lives an average life. From banal conversations at the coffee machine to his observations of social life, the book is a journey of disenchantment. The story of this depressed and isolated man, told through his monologues and adventures, is a strong critique of modern society, obsessed with sex, money, and success. Beside its pessimistic yet funny point of view, the book is now considered as one of the most devastating satires of our time!

    In this class we will focus on learning and strengthening your French by reading (in class and at home), understanding, exploring vocabulary and grammar, and discussing the themes of the story. An average of 30 pages will be read each week.

    This class will interest you if you want to keep learning French by reading a classic of 20th century French Literature and if you want to discover Michel Houellebecq, considered one of the best – and most polemical – French writers.

  • ONLINE B1.LIT.E12(II) (Level B1/B2) - 5 Weeks - Wed 5:45pm–7:15pm - Feb 24-Mar 24 - H.Fortin

    La Gloire de mon père de Marcel Pagnol

    Marcel Pagnol (1895-1974) started his literary career late in life after having worked as a playwright, a screenwriter, and a movie director. In 1957, he started writing his autobiography and the first book, La Gloire de mon père, was published the same year. It became a huge success and is still considered as a classic of French literature.

    The book focuses on Marcel Pagnol’s childhood in Marseille and his vacation in the village of La Treille with his family. Filled with funny memories and vivid portraits of people living around him, the book delves into the quintessential and picturesque Provence with its lively charm, sunny landscapes, and refreshing characters. A perfect winter reading!

    In this class we will focus on learning and strengthening your French by reading (in class and at home), understanding, exploring vocabulary and grammar, and discussing the themes of the story. An average of 40 pages will be read each week.

    This class will interest you if you want to keep learning French by reading a classic of 20th century French literature and if you want to discover the sunny and refreshing world of Marcel Pagnol.

  • ONLINE B1.LIT.L01 (Level B1/B2) - 11 Weeks - Tue 2pm-3:30pm - Jan 12-Mar 23 - L.Thommeret

    Le roman de l’honneur : Colomba de P. Mérimée

    In this course, you will greatly expand your French vocabulary by reading Colomba, a novella by famed 19th century author Prosper Mérimée.

    This course is especially for you if you like to read and you have reached a level in French where you can start reading literary texts.

    By the end of this course, you will have expanded your French vocabulary and developed your ability to read, understand, and analyze French literature.

  • ONLINE B2.LIT.L01 (Level B2/C1/C2) - 11 Weeks - Mon 5:45pm–7:15pm - Jan 11-Mar 29 - H.Fortin

    Vernon Subutex I de Virginie Despentes

    Vernon Subutex est un ancien disquaire parisien, expulsé de chez lui, qui doit contacter ses anciens amis pour être hébergé quelques jours chez chacun d’entre eux. Ancien punk, il traverse une véritable crise mais son aventure se révèlera tout aussi éprouvante qu’optimiste. D’appartements en appartements, Virginie Despentes fait une galerie de portraits aussi divers que touchants, comme si sa chute n’était qu’un prétexte pour renouer avec de vieilles amitiés. C’est qu’il s’agit surtout de cela dans tout le roman : recréer du lien entre les gens, parler du temps qui passe et de la vie. C’est finalement une véritable « comédie humaine » balzacienne qui se lit dans ces pages, métaphore d’une France contemporaine pleine de contradictions, de doutes et de regrets, de désir inavoué, de peurs, mais aussi d’optimisme et de compassion.

    Paru en 2015, le livre (première partie d’une trilogie) a reçu un excellent accueil critique et a propulsé Virginie Despentes, déjà écrivaine et réalisatrice reconnue, dans la liste des grands auteurs français.

    Ce cours conviendra particulièrement à ceux qui sont intéressés par la littérature française contemporaine et qui veulent découvrir Virginie Despentes, auteure féministe et engagée à la vie incroyable. Son style particulièrement vif et acéré est aussi un bon moyen pour se familiariser avec le français oral et le registre familier.

    Il faudra lire environ 40 pages par semaine.

  • ONLINE B2.LIT.L02 (Level B2/C1/C2) - 11 Weeks - Tue 5:45pm–7:15pm - Jan 12-Mar 23 - C.Bellahsen

    Le Testament Français d’Andreï Makine, de l’Académie Française

    Dans ce cours, nous allons découvrir ensemble le roman trois fois récompensé d’Andrei Makine, Le Testament Français. Les prix Goncourt Général, Goncourt lycéens et le prix Médicis font de ce roman un véritable chef d’œuvre de la littérature française. Ce roman, merveilleusement composé, nous offre de la France une vision mythique, lointaine, nostalgique, à travers les nombreuses histoires que Charlotte Lemonnier, «égarée dans l’immensité neigeuse de la Russie», raconte à son petit-fils et confident. Cette France, qu’explore à son tour le narrateur, apparaît comme un regard neuf et pénétrant sur le monde. Il reçoit la langue française comme héritage de cette grand-mère qu’il aime tant et apprend le français à partir de ses souvenirs personnels. Ce roman d’un Russe francophone n’est pas seulement l’histoire de sa relation avec la France mais aussi une fresque tragique de la vie des populations à travers les plaines de Sibérie sous l’ère soviétique.
    Ensemble, nous allons parcourir ce récit raffiné à l’écriture délicate. Je vous propose de la lecture à voix haute, une analyse littéraire, une sélection de passages choisis au fil des séances pour débattre et partager en classe. Chaque semaine, des questions seront élaborées pour affiner la compréhension.

  • ONLINE B2.LIT.L03 (Level B2/C1/C2) - 11 Weeks - Thu 10am–11:30am - Jan 14-Mar 25 - F.CousinSchwab

    Littérature francophone contemporaine

    Dans ce cours, vous allez découvrir différents auteur(e)s francophones contemporains (20ème et 21ème siècles) à travers la lecture d’extraits de romans et de nouvelles.
    Vous étudierez plusieurs styles littéraires et débattrez de divers thèmes culturels en lien avec les œuvres lues.

    Ce cours vous est plus particulièrement destiné si vous êtes passionnés par la lecture et voulez découvrir la richesse de la littérature francophone, dans toute sa variété ; si vous voulez pratiquer votre français lors de discussions autour de thèmes culturels et littéraires ; et si vous aimeriez vous lancer dans la lecture d’œuvres complètes mais vous ne savez pas encore par où commencer !

    A la fin de ce cours, vous aurez enrichi votre vocabulaire littéraire et acquis des stratégies de lecture qui vous aideront à vous lancer dans la lecture d’œuvres complètes. Vous connaîtrez une dizaine d’auteurs francophones, leur style et leurs thèmes de prédilection.

    Exemples de lecture : Dany Laferrière – Journal d’un écrivain en pyjama ; Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt – Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran ; Amélie Nothomb – Biographie de la faim ; Gaël Faye – Petit pays ; Marcel Pagnol – La gloire de mon père (en lien avec l’adaptation cinématographique) ; Patrick Modiano – Rue des boutiques obscures ; Chahdortt Djavann – Je ne suis pas celle que je suis ; Leïla Slimani – Le pays des autres ; Henri Troyat – Aliocha ; Dominique Bona – Berthe Morisot (en lien avec l’histoire de l’Impressionnisme) ; Simone de Beauvoir – Mémoires d’une jeune fille rangée.