FREN311-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023

Banned Books and Countercultures

30 points

Start Date: Monday, 20 February 2023
End Date: Sunday, 25 June 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 5 March 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 14 May 2023


This course continues the study of French texts, films and topics in French culture. Students must be able to read French.

This course studies France’s legacy from the sixteenth to the twenty-first century, focusing on a varied selection of topics: the classical theatre of Molière, a philosophical tale by Voltaire (18th century), a selection of nineteenth-century poetry (from the Romantics to the Symbolists), French existentialism and surrealism, as well as French film.

This course is intended for students who are proficient in French. It is designed to develop your French reading, writing, listening and speaking skills and to broaden and deepen your knowledge of France's legacy in literature and culture. The texts are in French, as is some of the teaching. Please note: this course is cross-coded with FREN211; students enrolled in FREN311 will, however, have an extra hour seminar entirely in French (with assessment completed in French).

Learning Outcomes

  • As a student in this course you will study several topics from different periods of French culture. At the completion of the course you will have acquired:

  • an improved sense of the legacy of the past to modern France and the contribution of France
    to the whole Western world;
  • some specialised knowledge in key areas of French culture from the past;
  • a basic understanding of some approaches to French Studies;
  • an ability to place French cultural texts in a wider social and historical context, and to take account of differences in genre, purpose and philosophy;
  • an understanding of the diachronic breadth and their relation to current events, both within
    French and the Francophone world, as well as more globally (for example: issues of language politics, diverse sociolinguistic registers, colonialism and post-colonialism…). We will draw on specific parallels between these contexts and Aotearoa;
  • an ability to identify relevant secondary sources about France and francophone countries;
  • development of intellectual curiosity, and enhanced intercultural understanding;
  • an awareness of the values and complexities of other belief systems and societies without
    necessarily agreeing with them;
  • an ability to show a good level of critical thinking and argumentative skills, thus further
    engraining critical competence in students which extends far beyond French studies.
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Employable, innovative and enterprising

      Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.

      Biculturally competent and confident

      Students will be aware of and understand the nature of biculturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, and its relevance to their area of study and/or their degree.

      Engaged with the community

      Students will have observed and understood a culture within a community by reflecting on their own performance and experiences within that community.

      Globally aware

      Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.


Any 60 points at 200 level from any subject. A reading knowledge of French required.


FREN208, FREN304, FREN211

Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Antonio Viselli


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Banned Book Review 20% Due week 5 (1000 words)
Reading Comprehension Test 10% Held week 8
Exposé 25% Due throughout semester
Final Essay 30% Due during exam period
Participation 15%

Textbooks / Resources

The required text for this course is the FREN211/311 Course pack which will be provided to you, as well as L’Étranger by Albert Camus (available free online at:

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,641.00

International fee $7,500.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences .

All FREN311 Occurrences

  • FREN311-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023