French And Italian | Topics in French Literature in Translation
F310 | 4386 | Mickel


Topic: Knighthood, duty and love in war.  To whom must one be loyal:
one's lover or one's family? one's wife or one's lover? oneself, in
choosing one's own happiness, or one's spouse, in choosing his/her
happiness above one's own? How can one even make the choice between
them? In "Duty in Love and War" we will treat texts from two periods
of history–the Middle Ages and the seventeenth century–whose main
characters struggle with such questions. We shall explore two periods
of chivalry and the intense values of honor , duty and love and the
conflict often brought to the man or woman who finds these inner
values in conflict with life's realities of family, country, class,
and friendship. How do these two periods differ in their way of
calling men and women honorable—knights and ladies? How do these inner
values conflict with external realities of the time? More subtly, how
do the authors use these ancient heroes and heroines from Rome and
Greece in the politics and philosophical debates of their own time? Do
the values of these men and women still matter today? Do we still have
such conflicts in our own time?

From the Middle Ages we'll read in translation: Lancelot, Erec and
Enide, St Alexis, Eliduc (lai of Marie de France) and the Song
of Roland; in the seventeenth century four plays, Andromaque,
The Cid, Horace and Bérénice. In addition to the readings
the students would see one film: Rob Roy. This class will be
taught in English and will have two exams: a midterm and a final. F310
fulfills CSB and AHLA requirements.