31145 - French Literature 2

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

Upon completion of the course the student will adequately know the overall problems and the single aspects of the history of literature; he/she will be able to understand and translate original texts; he/she will possess the basic knowledge which are indispensable to undertake their critical interpretation, and will be able to comment upon them and to expound them by specific literary methods.

Course contents

Through the reading of full texts or selected passages from some narrative and lyric texts published during the Eighteenth and Nineteenth centuries, from Prévost to Zola, the various forms taken by the representation of Paris will be analyzed. On the one hand, the historical development of these forms will be explored in relation to the various authors and different centuries; and, on the other, we will try to describe in detail what constituted the fracture that, starting from Balzac, marked the transition to the realistic conception of the novel (and of the representation of reality).


Bibliography  for the students whether attending or not attending

Storia europea della letteratura francese, II. Dal Settecento all’età contemporanea, a cura di L. Sozzi, Torino, Einaudi, 2013, parte IV, “Il Settecento” (pp. 5-113) e parte V, “L’Ottocento” (pp. 129-226).

R. Campi, Il fango e l’oro. Parigi da Voltaire a Breton, Roma, Carocci

Integral reading in french text:

Prévost, Manon Lescaut (edizione consigliata Gallimard, Folio);

H. de Balzac, La Peau de Chagrin (edizione consigliata Pocket);

Flaubert, Trois contes (qualunque edizione);

Baudelaire, Spleen de Paris (edizione consigliata Gallimard, FolioPlus).

Selected texts in photocopy from:

Auerbach, Mimesis, capitoli “La cena interrotta” e “All’Hôtel de La Mole”;

Rousseau, Nouvelle Héloïse (scelta) ;

Voltaire, Candide, cap. XXII ;

Mercier, Tableau de Paris (scelta)

Pagine scelte da Montesquieu, Lettres persanes ;

H. de Balzac, Avant-propos (1842) de la Comédie humaine;

Maupassant, La Nuit;

C. Baudelaire, Tableaux parisiens (da Les Fleurs du Mal);

Teaching methods


Assessment methods

During the oral test, in French language, the basic knowledge of the subject matter of the course, that is to say the historical and literary period of the XVIII and XIX centuries, will be assessed. See the bibliography for the pages of Storia europea della letteratura francese (edited by L. Sozzi), which is MANDATORY STUDY for all the students, whether attending or non attending, and is ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY to pass the examination.

Furthermore, the knowledge of the selected texts and of the single authors’ works dealt with during the lectures and present in bibliography will be assessed to evaluate the student’s critical and interpretative skill. Therefore, an in-depth knowledge of the historical development of the two centuries, together with the skill to correctly interpret the texts, will be evaluated as excellent, while the purely descriptive skill to sum up and to set forth the historical and literary problems emerging from the reading of single texts will be evaluated as sufficient. The incapacity to grasp the logical and descriptive connections between historical and cultural phenomena, critical and theoretical notions and literary works will be evaluated as insufficient.

Teaching tools

Didactic materials will be available to the students both online and in pdf format, as well as in photocopy.

Office hours

See the website of Riccardo Campi