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FRE4006 : Contemporary French Cinema (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Sarah Leahy
  • Other Staff: Professor Guy Austin
  • Owning School: Modern Languages
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


•       In consonance with the overall aims of the degrees offered in the SML to build on skills gained at Stages 1 and 2, and to provide students with an in-depth knowledge of aspects of French cinema.
•       To prepare students for postgraduate study in the area of French Cultural studies or Film Studies.
•       To develop students’ language skills in spoken and written French, especially in the areas of French culture and cinema.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will study 6 key contemporary French films since the 1990s. Films will be drawn from both popular and auteurist cinema and will be used to explore important concepts in film studies such as: stardom, genre, representations of ethnicity, gender and sexuality, questions of national cinema, and the representation of history, society and national myths.
Films to be studied may include: Lemming, La Question humaine, 8 femmes, Potiche, Un héros très discret, Bienvenue chez les ch’tis.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion331:0033:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture121:0012:00Students will have 1 lecture of one hour per week.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading321:0032:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching201:0020:00Students will have 2 hours of seminars per week, taught in small groups.
Guided Independent StudySkills practice331:0033:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity331:0033:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00Students will have the opportunity to drop in and discuss feedback on their work & any questions.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study331:0033:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module will explore key aspects of contemporary French cinema: auteurism, representations of national identities, national myths, social and ethnic exclusion, gender and sexuality, in both popular and auteur cinema. Films may include: Lemming, La Question humaine, 8 femmes, Potiche, Un héros très discret, Bienvenue chez les ch’tis. Students will be expected to read the preparatory texts closely as lectures will assume knowledge of these, and seminars will entail analysis of film sequences in small groups followed by class debate. The following skills will be developed:
Preparatory work for the lectures and seminars: bibliographical work, planning and organizing, independent study.
Lectures: Note-taking.
Seminars: Note-taking, teamwork (including initiative, adaptability and interpersonal communication), arguing opinions, analysing sequences, oral communication and presentation skills, problem solving.
Plus optional film screenings: one per week.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M30A sequence analysis of no more than 1500 words, on a sequence to be provided. Week 7.
Essay2A70An essay of no more than 2500 words, responding to one of a set of questions provided.
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Essay2MWeek 4.Students will write an essay introduction of approx. 500 words.They will be required to give feedback on each others’ work
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The summative assessment is in two parts:
1.       Sequence analysis of 1500 words (30%). Students must provide a sequence analysis on a film clip from one of the films studied on the module. The sequences will be provided along with a list of questions/aspects that students may wish to consider in their analysis. This should take the form of an essay of 1500 words. The exercise is designed to test students’ ability to analyse form, content and context, and to relate these three aspects of the sequence to each other.

2.       Essay of 2500 words (70%), in which students will be expected to demonstrate an understanding of context and film style as well as to engage critically with appropriate academic sources. Questions will be designed to test the students' ability to draw on specific textual analysis of the films, as well as demonstrating links between formal aspects of the films and the broader concepts discussed in lectures, in order to show their overall understanding of the period and its key films. Students will be expected to have acquired a good knowledge of relevant scholarly writing as well as the films themselves. This component of the assessment will be in French and will allow students to demonstrate the ability to communicate ideas and arguments fluently and succinctly in French, and to develop the following skills: independent research, bibliographical work, planning and organizing, word-processing, footnoting and referencing.
In addition, there will be a formative assessment. This will be set in week 4 and will take the form of an extended essay introduction. Students will have to reflect on the purpose of the introduction in setting out the hypothesis, key debates and in outlining the plan of the essay, and provide feedback on a colleague’s work. This exercise will help develop the following skills: critical review, developing and communicating an argument, planning and organising. Teamwork and interpersonal communication, problem solving.

Reading Lists