Modern Languages and Cultures

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Code FREN223
Coordinator Dr RJ Dixon
Modern Languages and Cultures
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2020-21 Level 5 FHEQ First Semester 15

Pre-requisites before taking this module (other modules and/or general educational/academic requirements):


Modules for which this module is a pre-requisite:


Co-requisite modules:


Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours   22

Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 128


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Exam There is a resit opportunity. This is an anonymous assessment.  2 hours    50       
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Essay There is a resit opportunity. Standard UoL penalty applies for late submission. This is an anonymous assessment.  -2000 words    50       


To introduce students to Paris as a diverse, global city from a historical and theoretical perspective;

To develop students' ability to apply theoretical approaches or critical secondary literature to the study of cities in general, and to Paris, its arrondissements and banlieues in particular;

To enhance students' skills of critical analysis and independent thinking and research.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Understand the diversity of Paris and its culture as a capital city both across time and at individual periods in its history.

(LO2) Apply theoretical approaches or critical secondary literature to the analysis of a range of sources in different textual forms and visual media, and from diverse periods in French history, both individually and comparatively.

(LO3) Show an awareness of concepts and debates relating to the study of the city in general as a cultural, multilingual, and historically marked space.

(LO4) Successfully carry out a piece of individual research.

(S1) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Academic writing (inc. referencing skills)

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - visual

(S3) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

(S4) Global citizenship - Cultural awareness

(S5) Personal attributes and qualities - independence

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Teaching Method 1 - Seminar
Description: The module is taught entirely via seminars by a team of members of the French teaching staff. On the one hand, seminars provide essential background to the material studied, both the discrete areas of Paris under discussion and wider questions of Paris as a diverse, global city. On the other, they consolidate students' understanding of these areas, as well as providing the opportunity to deepen and broaden their expertise through the close study of a variety of texts and (moving and still) images. Student learning is further supported by online activities and resources which facilitate both individual and group study as relevant. Where necessary screenings of films will be scheduled.
Attendance Recorded: Yes



Topics studied within the different arrondissements and banlieues will vary from year to year and may include the following:

Consumption and consumerism: Shopping and style in nineteenth-century Paris (Emile Zola, Au Bonheur des Dames  (1883));

The evolution of the urban landscape and its lieux de mémoire;   Jewish Paris (Patrick Modiano, Dora Bruder (1997));

'Paris and its banlieues: Centre versus periphery (Les Passagers du Roissy Express (1990));

Paris as European capital of manners?

Jean de Préchac’s L’Illustre Parisienne (1679);

'Paris et les manifs: Colonial history and the capital (Leila Sebbar, La Seine était rouge (2003));

The Nouvelle Vague and 1960s Paris.

Recommended Texts

Reading lists are managed at Click here to access the reading lists for this module.