Course description: Songs enjoy a special status in modern society. Nowhere is this as evident as in French culture. The course will examine the cultural and social background of various “chansons,” and the role some played in important moments of French history. We will also examine how the French chanson has accompanied the changing urban landscape, especially in Paris, with the disappearance and rebirth of various neighborhoods.
Most important, using the course’s Sakai site, we will listen to the songs themselves, while reading both lyrics and translation. The sakai site will also include a number of documents and maps related to the periods and events studied.
Neither knowledge of French, nor musical talent or experience are required from students. The course will be taught in English. All assignments will encourage and draw on student creativity in their individual chosen fields, from translation to visual arts, to musical performance, to historical research.
Language of instruction: English
Satisfies SAS Core Learning Goals: AHr and HST-1
Exams, Assignments, and Grading Policy: The final grade will be determined by class participation (50%) and contribution(s) (50%) to the class’ collective, final project, most likely a CD and/or a booklet.
Faculty: Uri Eisenzweig