Moments littéraires de l'expression française
en son et mouvement

French 495 (Topics in French Language & Literature); Fall of 2008, MWF 12-12:50 PM (in H407). Successful completion of French 341 or 342 or departmental permission prerequisite.  Prof. TennesseeBob Peckham (427E Humanities -Tel. 881-7424. Home 587-6562. e-mail: Office hours:

MEDIA: Krueger, Cheryl Lea et al. Mise en scène - cinéma et lecture. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson - Prentice Hall, 2006.

Course interactive syllabus for French 495

Mise en scène - cinéma et lecture web site English-French Dictionary

Le Grand Dictionnaire terminologique

Le Conjugueur

Course goals: 1) to learn how to organize our observations about individual literary works, using a close-reading critical form called "explication de texte". 2) To experience a small number of literary works, most of them modern works, where understanding elements of video and film presentation are necessary for an overall comprehension of the work, and passing our observations through the criteria of literary explication, some of it oral and some written.

Objectives and Strategies: Read a description of "explication de texte" and a model of one applied to a French poem. Begin to apply "explication de texte" by reading 7 short French poems, building gradually toward the writing of complete explications, writing one whole explication for practice and then one as a finished product. Learn enough video and music terminology for close viewings of 7 French music videos, write one whole explication for practice and then one as a finished product. We will prepare for our close viewing of 4  French films with a history of French film, and the introductory chapter in our textbook (pp. 1-7). We will pick up more vocabulary in the exercises accompanying each film and we will use these in one complete explication of one film scene and then of one whole film (other than one for the fist explication).

You will be responsible in tests quizzes for certain facts about all of the works examined.  Facts from lecture notes and discussions are also fair game for tests and quizzes, so be in class. You will write assignments where you must answer with whole sentences and paragraphs. The class will be conducted in French.  In our four linguistic skills we will target levels "intermediate high" and above on the ACTFL scale.  

Grade Scale and Determination: 60-69=D, 70-79=C, 80-89=B, 90-100=A We have a 1000 point system. We will have a test on the poems and explication procedures and vocabulary, one on the music videos and video vocabulary, one on a history of French film essay and film vocabulary, a final in review of the films. There will be 4 short quizzes for the 4 films.  3 tests = 300 points, final exam = 200 points, 4 quizzes = 100,  4 explications =  200, homework and class participation. I will have one extra credit-assignment, concerning a film.

General & Ethical Expectations: We expect students to demonstrate a solid work ethic, and to conduct themselves as ladies and gentlemen, with special attention given to the "Standards of Conduct" and "Academic Integrity" sections of

      The University of Tennessee at Martin Student Handbook

as a base-line minimum for their behavior. Since our class focus is writing, and since at your level you are expected to be able to create with the language rather than just using learned phrases or imitating discourse, plagiarism will be a concern. Anything outside of living up to these standards is unacceptable to this instructor.

Home preparation and class participation: You will type all written assignments. If you have trouble with accents, please refer to my web page:

    Making Accents with MACs and PCs

Typing all your work gives you a record of what you did, and since very little is written by hand, it gives you practice doing what you will do all your life, also a proof that you can really write in French.  Beyond this, you must be in class for me to judge the quality your participation and your preparation

Attendance: PLEASE DON'T MISS! The department requires that I dock 5 points for each unexcused absence after 3. That leaves you very little room, even if your work is flawless, but if you miss too much, I will also have to subtract from your class performance

HELP! Be honest with yourself and with me. If you have difficulty in this course, use your resource materials, and contact me ASAP. I want you to succeed.

Extra Credit Policy: See our cultural events policy web page:

TV 5: You are encouraged (with a small amount of extra credit) to watch one half hour of TV5 programming

    TV5 USA

FRENCH CLUB: All interested students are encouraged to join the CERCLE FRANCOPHONE and to enrich their understanding of the French language and francophone culture by participating in its activities.

Lesson list
TennesseeBob Peckham
Director, the Globe-Gate Project
University of Tennessee-Martin