Senior Seminar FREN 4110
Professor Masano Yamashita
In this course we will undertake an in-depth analysis of the figure of the child as well as the teenager in French-language cinema and literature. Children were historically misunderstood as either miniature adults or as kinds of animals. This seminar will try to gain a precise understanding of the characteristics and rights of children. At the same time we will aim to appreciate the fluidity that typifies childhood by exploring representations of rites of passage that take us from childhood to adulthood; from one gender identity to another; or from states of dependence to emancipation. Themes pertaining to children’s rights, race and gender identity, love and moral dilemmas, will be a particular focus of this semester. Finally we will try to understand the relationship between the universalism of the themes of childhood and adolescence and the specificity of the cultural constructs of Frenchness.
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