HILI Courses at Reid Hall

Fall 2018  Introduction to History and Literature. 3 pts. Carol Gluck.
A historical and conceptual introduction to the relationship between history and literature.

Fall 2018  Narratives of World War II. 3 pts. Fall. Carol Gluck.
An examination of literary, cinematic, and museal narratives of the Second World War produced in the decades since 1940 in France and other places. The analytic approach centers both on the historicity of, and the history in, the texts, with the goal of questioning the nature of narrative in different forms and practicing the blend of literary and historical approaches treated in the core course. Because the war remains so prominent an issue in culture, politics, and memory in France and elsewhere, the course presents an opportunity to explore the connections between history and literature in a field rich with great literary and cinematic texts and alive with dynamic historical debate. 

French Language Course. No credits. Fall. Prof. Cecile Balavoine.
The first half of this course focuses on grammar review and oral/aural skills and the second half on written expression. Readings are drawn from contemporary French and Francophone texts. To prepare students to adapt to their seminars at the ENS and the EHESS,  increasing emphasis is placed on analytical skills and on the cogent presentation of ideas and points of view. Sections are very small ( 5 students) so that students can make quick progress. During the remainder of the year, students have the possibility of working one-on-one with Professor Christine Valero.

Spring 2019  Research Seminar. 3 pts. Prof. Pierre Force
This seminar is a step-by-step introduction to scholarly research in the field of History and Literature. In the course of the seminar, students will learn to design meaningful research questions that resonate with current scholarly debates, develop and carry out research strategies that answer these questions, and hone their academic writing skills. Several hands-on sessions will be devoted to visits to libraries and archival repositories, during which students will learn to establish a bibliography and to locate and read archival sources.

Spring 2019  French America, 1534-1804. 3 pts. Prof. Pierre Force
A study of the French Atlantic World from the exploration of Canada to the Louisiana Purchase and Haitian Independence, with a focus on the relationship between war and trade, forms of intercultural negotiation, the economics of slavery, and the changing meaning of race. Special attention will be paid to literary representations of America, such as Prévost's Manon Lescaut and Chateaubriand's Atala.

May-July 2019 History of the Self: Tocqueville. 3 pts. Prof. Mark Lilla

 

 

Fall 2017: Introduction to History and Literature. 3 pts. Prof. Loren Wolfe.
This course offers a broad overview of the different ways in which History and Literature have crossed paths since the early modern period. Its main goal is not to provide a single theoretical or methodological framework, but to introduce students to the many debates that have marked the relationship (and at times, confrontation) between history and literature.

Fall 2017: Minorities in France: Exiled histories, Contested Memories, Collective Protests. 3 pts. Prof. Jean-Philippe Dedieu
Minorities in France endeavors to understand the development of the peculiar, intense, and historically conflictual relationship that exists between the French state and ethnic, racial or religious minorities. This course will also explore how history, memory and representation have been mutually entangled and politically contested from post-World War II to the present day. Historical episodes include the aftermath of the Holocaust, struggles around decolonization in Africa, Asia, and Maghreb, the growing politicization of minorities in the wake of May 1968, as well as the rise and demise of multiculturalism over the last two decades of the XXth century. Using oral testimonies, novels, films, and photographs, a specific emphasis will be placed on how discrimination and state violence were lived by marginalized groups and how they responded to and remembered specific and dramatic events over time.

Fall 2017 (mid-September through October): French Language Course. No credits. Prof. Cecile Balavoine
The first half of this course focuses on grammar review and oral/aural skills and the second half on written expression. Readings are drawn from contemporary French and Francophone texts. To prepare students to adapt to their seminars at the ENS and the EHESS,  increasing emphasis is placed on analytical skills and on the cogent presentation of ideas and points of view. Sections are very small (5 students) so that students can make quick progress. During the remainder of the year, students have the possibility of working one-on-one with tutors. See tutoring for more information.

Spring 2018: Research Seminar. 3 pts. Prof. Jenny Davidson.
This seminar is a step-by-step introduction to scholarly research in the field of History and Literature. In the course of the seminar, students will learn to design meaningful research questions that resonate with current scholarly debates, to develop and carry out research strategies that answer these questions, and to hone their academic writing skills. Several hands-on sessions will be devoted to visits to libraries and archival repositories, during which students will learn to establish a bibliography and to locate and read archival sources.

Spring 2018: "Epic Histories." Prof. Jenny Davidson.
We will immerse ourselves - in a process of "slow reading" - over the semester in two major works of history that also have claims to significant literary status and influence, Edward Gibbon's DECLINE AND FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE and Walter Benjamin's ARCADES PROJECT.  We'll consider questions of modern versus postmodern history, historiography and methodology, status and standards of evidence, among other things; written work will include three or four short assignments, some of them experimental and/or creative in nature, with a strong emphasis on archives and methods, and a longer project at the end of the semester.

May-June 2018: Global Histories of the Book. 3 pts. Prof. Joseph Howley
Global Histories of the Book considers the history of books around the world, beginning with the invention of writing across different societies, and traces the development of both technologies and cultures of the book through the development of printing and beyond.  Students learn to handle and study rare books materials, and are able to compare the development of book technologies in different parts of the world, challenge traditional Western narratives about the book and its history, and articulate the role of—and consequences for—the book in processes of colonialism, imperialism, and globalization

 

Fall 2016 : Introduction to History and Literature. 3 pts. Prof Marcellus Blount and Loren Wolfe.
This course offers a broad overview of the different ways in which History and Literature have crossed paths since the early modern period. Its main goal is not to provide a single theoretical or methodological framework, but to introduce students to the many debates that have marked the relationship (and at times, confrontation) between history and literature.

Fall 2016 : Writing from France:  Black Expatriates in Paris. 3 pts. Prof. Marcellus Blount and Jean-Philippe Dedieu.
This course surveys the literature of African Americans in Paris in the twentieth century from the 1900’s to the present.  Emphasizing such major figures as James Baldwin, Barbara Chase-Riboud, and Richard Wright, what does it mean for African Americans to highlight race, cultural geography and national identity?  And is there a lineage of artists who complicate questions of gender and sexual orientation? What has brought African American artists to Paris?  What artistic, cultural and political freedoms have they found?

Fall 2016 (mid-September through October): French Language Course. No credits. Prof. Cecile Balavoine.
The first half of this course focuses on grammar review and oral/aural skills and the second half on written expression. Readings are drawn from contemporary French and Francophone texts. To prepare students to adapt to their seminars at the ENS and the EHESS,  increasing emphasis is placed on analytical skills and on the cogent presentation of ideas and points of view. Sections are very small (5 students) so that students can make quick progress. During the remainder of the year, students have the possibility of working one-on-one with tutors.

Spring 2017   Research Seminar. 3 pts. Prof. Michael Stanislawski
This seminar is a step-by-step introduction to scholarly research in the field of History and Literature. In the course of the seminar, students will learn to design meaningful research questions that resonate with current scholarly debates, develop and carry out research strategies that answer these questions, and hone their academic writing skills. Several hands-on sessions will be devoted to visits to libraries and archival repositories, during which students will learn to establish a bibliography and to locate and read archival sources.

Spring  2017  From Enlightment to Romanticism in French thought (1700-1848). 3 pts. Prof. Michael Stanislawski
This course, specifically developed for the MA HILI will focus on the two most important intellectual and ideological movements in eighteenth and early nineteenth-century French history, the Enlightenment and Romanticism. It will begin with posing the question central to any analysis of both movements : Was there a unified movement to be called The Enlightenment or European Romanticism as a whole or is it more analytically correct to speak of Enlightenments and Romanticisms in the plural ? To address these questions we will read carefully a selection of primary sources that deal with the central question of their time (in many ways, ours) : rationalism versus “irrationalism” and their epistemological correlates; their relationship of the “West” and the “East”; the connections between gender norms and political systems; a rethinking of Aristotle’s taxinomy of states and the relationship between property holding and political power; the role of religion (newly defined) and politics; the individual vs the nation (newly defined), education and tradition; and the meaning and place  of art and the artist in modern society.

May-June 2017  Aesthetics and Philosophy of History. 3 pts. Prof. Dorothea von Mücke

HILI G4002 Introduction to History and Literature. 3 pts. Fall. Carol Gluck (bio).
A historical and conceptual introduction to the relationship between history and literature.

HILI G8200 Narratives of World War II. 3 points. Fall. Carol Gluck (bio).
An examination of literary, cinematic, and museal narratives of the Second World War produced in the decades since 1940 in France and other places. The analytic approach centers both on the historicity of, and the history in, the texts, with the goal of questioning the nature of narrative in different forms and practicing the blend of literary and historical approaches treated in the core course. Because the war remains so prominent an issue in culture, politics, and memory in France and elsewhere, the course presents an opportunity to explore the connections between history and literature in a field rich with great literary and cinematic texts and alive with dynamic historical debate. 

French Language Course. No credits. Fall. Prof. Cecile Balavoine.
The first half of this course focuses on grammar review and oral/aural skills and the second half on written expression. Readings are drawn from contemporary French and Francophone texts. To prepare students to adapt to their seminars at the ENS and the EHESS,  increasing emphasis is placed on analytical skills and on the cogent presentation of ideas and points of view. Sections are very small ( 5 students) so that students can make quick progress. During the remainder of the year, students have the possibility of working one-on-one with Professor Christine Valero.

HILI G8400 Research Seminar. 3 pts. Spring. Joseph Slaughter (bio).
Initiation to archival, bibliographical, and philological work, with hands-on sessions in libraries and archives, and designing of a research project.

HILI G8196  Plagiarism and Postcolonialism. 3 points. Spring. Joseph Slaughter (bio).
This course examines practices of literary plagiarism, piracy, kidnapping, reproduction, impersonation and other disparaged textual activities in the context of (neo)imperial relations between literatures of (post)colonies and their metropolitan centers. If colonialism can be understood as, in part, an effort to reproduce some form of the culture of the imperial power in the colony, common accusations of plagiarism against (post)colonial writers would seem to reflect a fundamental anxiety about the cultural, social, and political projects of colonialism. Looking at multiple examples of “copy-writing,” this course moves beyond the “empire-writes-back” model of intertextuality that has characterized so many studies of the postcolonial novel, in which non-Western literature is read simply as a derivative response to the European canon. The course will study cases that involve “trafficking” in texts across linguistic and national boundaries to analyze historical, cultural, socio-economic, political and theoretical notions of authorship, originality, and (trans-)textuality as they intersect with colonialism and postcolonialism and as they are being negotiated in legal and literary conventions in the contemporary era of cultural-economic globalization. 

HILI G8197 Africa and France. 3 points. Summer. Gregory Mann (bio).
This course endeavors to understand the development of the peculiar, intense, and historically conflictual relationship that exists between France and the sub-Saharan nation-states that are its former African colonies. Although the relationship between France and Africa is centuries old, having pre-dated the French Revolution and been forged partly in the trans-Atlantic trade in slaves, this course covers the period from France’s 19th century colonial conquest of Africa to the contemporary African diaspora in France. Historical episodes include the expansion of France’s imperial republic, the rise and evolution of anti-colonialism, struggles around decolonization, and French-African relations in the post-colonial world. This is not a survey course; nor is it a course in international relations. Its goal is to situate historically the development of a shared—if contested—French-African political language, via key texts and ideas.

Example of courses taught in the past:

Fall 2011: The Realistic Novel in Context, Prof. Elisabeth Ladenson
Fall 2012: Narratives of World War II, Prof. Carol Gluck
Fall 2013: The Archival Imagination, Professor Brent Edwards
Fall 2014: The Voice of the Witness, Prof. Marianne Hirsch and Leo Spitzer

Spring 2012: Rousseau’s Confessions, Professor Robert Morrissey
Spring 2013: Le Point de vue de l'indigène (1930-1970), Prof. Vincent Debaene
Spring 2014: Legacies of the First World War: history, memory and literature, Prof. Sylvie Aprile
Spring 2015: La France des Intellectuels, Prof. Philippe Roger

May-June 2012: History and Literature of Slavery, Professor Eric Foner
May-July 2013: Defoe’s London, Professor Carl Wennerlind.
May-July 2014: The Nation-Between History and Literature, Professor Emmanuelle Saada
May-July 2015: History and Literature of Slavery, Professor Eric Foner

"The Archival Imagination" taught by Prof. Brent Edwards