Please note that all course offerings are subject to change. Changes in faculty availability and student enrollment can occasionally result in course cancellations.
Click on a course name to see a course description and a sample syllabus from a past semester. (Current syllabi may differ.) For sample syllabi or academic questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A list of all courses offered at the Global Academic Centers, organized by department, can be found here.
Spring 2015 courses with days and times will be available in Albert, NYU's Student Information System in mid October, 2014. Directions on how to view Study Away courses in Albert, and other Registration FAQs can be found here.
All applicants to NYU Paris apply for either Program I or II.
Language Course Placement
Students who have never taken any French should enroll in Intensive Elementary Frech.
Students who HAVE previously taken French courses at NYU or their home university
should register for the French class at the next level up, for example:
Students who have taken French in high school, but not at the college level, or have other non-college experience with French should take NYU's Online Language Placement Exam (password is nyulanguage), and use the results to place themselves in a French course.
If you scored a 4 or 5 on the French AP test, you should enroll for Written Contemporary
French. No language placement exams are offered at NYU Paris.
This course aims to explore the place that Paris – and more broadly France -- hold in the public imaginary, while examining the tensions and antagonisms that rightfully complicate that view. Through a series of conferences, site visits, and seminars, the course examines four key moments or themes as a means of apprehending the density of French cultural, social, and political life. Starting with French republicanism, past, present, and future, we consider how France, at once the preeminent site of experiments in democratic liberty, is also plagued by institutional entrenchments of class stratification and the dual specters of colonialism and post-colonialism. Turning to Paris, the “capital of modernity,” we reflect on its 19th century emergence as a locus of phantasmagoria, mystery, and seduction, and the emergent capitalist forces that were shaping the urban landscape. We consider the early 20th century avant-garde, among the most important and radical artistic and political movements of our time, that opened new spaces in which to imagine the very terms of “art” and “politics,” to finish with a consideration of France in the contemporary moment, wrestling with global transformations, the crisis of the welfare state, and a tension between the reproduction of elites and a political commitment to equality that increasingly troubles the country’s educational system, politics, and cultural life.
Interdisciplinary and “inter-textual” in scope, the course fuses expert lectures, textual analysis, and out of the classroom experience, to bring together the artistic, the literary, and the social scientific, against the backdrop of global transformation.
Class organization and assignments
This is a required course for all students at NYUParis. Students meet in assigned groups according to their language level; students with an advanced level of French may do their coursework in French. Students are expected to attend all conferences and site visits, to do the assigned readings and to participate in class discussions.
Open to students in both Programs I & II
This workshop allows students the opportunity to sing their way to a discovery of French language and culture. Students expand their vocabulary and improve their pronunciation through performance while learning about the history and context of this popular art form. The workshop culminates in a performance at the end of the semester. Conducted in French.
Open to students in both Programs I & II
In this workshop students have the opportunity to deepen their understanding of phonetics and improve their pronunciation and comprehension of spoken French. Through listening exercises, poetry, and role-plays, students will work on articulation, rhythm and intonation. Conducted in French.
Open to students in both Program I & II
Students may work in a variety of realms such as drawing, painting, photography and/or folding. During the course the students will have the opportunity of creating alongside the professor in her art studio.
Students wishing to carry out a personal creative project are most welcome to develop it during the art classes. However, students choosing this must imperatively have proof prior to beginning art classes.
The course includes visits to museum to explore the wide range of subjects and materials available to contemporary artists, and concludes with the exhibition/ theatre performance in a prestigious Parisian venue at the end of the semester. Conducted in English.
Open to students in both Programs I & II
This workshop is both an active language and literature course, destined to introduce French poetry to students. In this course we will read poetry out loud in order to show how poetry is founded on rhythm and the repetition of phonetic and syntactic elements. This pragmatic approach will not only allow students to improve their pronunciation, but also to understand the poetic genre, the quality of poets’ language, their interest in etymology, metaphor, imagery, etc. Close readings, paraphrase and translations will allow students to considerably improve their mastery of the French language so that they in turn will be able to produce poetry of their own. This course will help them to integrate the phonic, rhythmic and musical dimensions of poetry, as well as learn about its various uses, from the intimate to historical testimonies. Conducted in French.
Enrollment by permission only. Application required.
This 4 credit course includes a weekly seminar and two full days and one half day (Monday-Friday) for their internship. Internship placements are made by EUSA, an organization partnering with NYU.
The seminar portion of the course explores many different aspects of your internship site. The goal is to finish the semester with an in-depth understanding of the company or organization, including its approach, its policies, and the context in which it operates. We will also discuss more generally the state of the contemporary workplace and ourselves as workers. Finally, you will use the seminar to reflect critically and analytically on the internship experience and as a way to refine your own personal and professional goals.
Sample Syllabus coming soon
Presentation and systematic practice of basic structures and vocabulary of oral French through dialogues, pattern drills, and exercises. Correct pronunciation, sound placement, and intonation are stressed. For students with little or no command of French. Completes the equivalent of one year's elementary course. Textbook: Alors? Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 10 or FREN-UA 1-2. Open to students who have completed the equivalent of a year's elementary level and to others on assignment by placement test. Completes the equivalent of a year's intermediate level in one semester.
Acquisition and practice of more sophisticated structures of French. Development of fundamental oral and written skills, vocabulary enrichment, conversational ability. Short reading texts; guided compositions. Completes the equivalent of one year's intermediate course. Textbook: Alors? Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 11-12 or FREN-UA 20. Open to students who have completed the equivalent of a year's intermediate level and to others who have passed the proficiency examination but who wish to review their French in order to take advanced courses in language, literature, and civilization.
Systematizes and reinforces language skills presented in earlier level courses through an intensive review of grammar, written exercises; an introduction to composition, lexical enrichment, and spoken skills. Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: For Fine Arts Majors/ Minors, permission of Fine Arts Chair/Faculty required Open to all NYU-France students. For Fine Arts Major/Minor credit, students need to have taken ARTH-UA.0002 or ARTH-UA.0400 and permission from DUGS or chair.
Beginning with the grandeur of Paris during the Belle Epoque and the Exposition Universelle of 1900, and moving to the violence and tragedy of World Wars I and II, this course examines the French modernist art movements of the first part of the 20th century. After identifying the origins of modernism in the late 19th century with Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, we will consider the ways in which Fauvism, Cubism, Expressionism, and Primitivism redefined modernism for the 20th century. Working with Dada and Surrealist art works, we will evaluate the relationship between humor, critique, and cultural and political dissension in artistic production. Finally, we will examine the trans-Atlantic currents of Abstraction, looking at Abstract Expressionism, L’Art Informel, and the Nouveau Realistes. Throughout this exploration, we will interrogate how social history, shaped by politics, gender, and race, informed the construction of an artistic modernism in the 20th century. Conducted in English.
Paris by the Seine stars in more Hollywood films than any other city. London on the Thames takes close runner-up position. But more than mythic, popular-culture stage sets, these two great European capitals operate as spectacular rival models in face of real-life, 21st-century dramas. Our course concentrates on a sequence of case studies targeting the evolving architecture and urban plan of Paris. We focus on current thematic debates crucial to its identity, survival and future—tradition contra innovation, continuity contra rupture, preservation contra demolition, obsolescence contra revitalization. We investigate controversies over the low- and high-density city; legislation on building heights, protection of skyline and riverbanks; the interface between historic and experimental building types; the balance between public and private space, residential and mixed-economy neighbourhoods, inner-city rehabilitation and suburban sprawl; intra- and extra-muros transportation systems (road, rail, river, air). As a foil and finale to our Paris studies, we conclude with a critical comparative analysis of contemporary London to illuminate fundamental differences between these two global cities: the rational French model largely tempered by state control against the exuberant English model predominantly driven by ultra-liberal policies. Will the third millennium ideal city emerge as a polymorphic combination of the two approaches? Conducted in English.
This course examines the social, economic, and political role of cinema in Europe, with an emphasis on recent decades. It takes into consideration transformations in film as a narrative form and cultural product in the shift from national cinema traditions to global communications networks and media convergence. Films studied include popular, independent, and avant-garde films from a range of countries and cultures. The structures of production, distribution, and conservation are also considered through visits to exhibitions, archives and movie theatres. Conducted in English.
Open to Global Liberal Studies students only.
Students come into close contact with the daily life of the site at which they are studying through a two-semester experiential learning sequence, which is designed to contextualize the site's culture and give students internship or internship-like experiences in the community. The fall Experiential Learning I course begins the immersion experience with a variety of community-based projects and an advanced introduction to the site's cultural and social identity. The spring Experiential Learning II includes a 2-credit on-site component that emphasizes internships (or the equivalent) and a 2-credit Junior Independent Research Seminar, in which students work online with a GLS faculty member and students with similar interests at different sites to craft an independent research project, an important preparation for the senior thesis. Conducted in English.
NYU Art History students: This course counts for Art History Elective credit.
This course aims to understand and appreciate the creativity and dynamism of the Parisian art scene today through an exploration of contemporary art in the capital. The course will focus on the diversity of resources provided by the city, with special attention to new artistic practices and loci of production, as well as the multiple actors involved, from artists themselves to private galleries to art critics and museum curators. Reference to major avant-garde art movements of the past such as dada, geometrical abstraction, surrealism and expressionism will also be made in order to better situate today’s artistic concerns. Conducted in English.
An introduction to classic texts of French political and social philosophy. Consideration of the historical influences upon and the historical impact of French thinkers. Through close readings and analysis of selected passages from primary sources (in English translation), and those few seminal non-French works that inspired new directions in French thought, we will explore the intellectual framework and historical references that inform French debates on politics and society to the present day. Philosophers to be considered include St. Thomas Aquinas, Machiavelli, Montaigne, de la Fontaine, Descartes, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Napoleon Bonaparte, Saint-Simon, Prudhon, Marx, Jules Ferry, Zola, Fanon, Camus, and Sartre. Conducted in English.
This course is designed to allow students to analyze and reenact excerpts from Molière’s plays. We will discover the playwright Molière (1622-1673) who was also an actor, troupe leader, and the author of numerous plays which remain to this day the most frequently staged plays in France. The recurring themes in his plays will be discussed, particularly in relation to the time period during which the plays were written. We will also touch on the role of farce in the work of this playwright who was nicknamed in the 17th century “the foremost joker in France.” Dramatic analysis of the plays chosen will require a comparative study of texts in French and in English.
We will read and analyze these texts out loud. Certain excerpts will need to be memorized. We will analyze the ideas expressed as well as the importance of certain words, of the images evoked, and of the punctuation used in order to bring to life the rhythm and musicality of the phrases. The ultimate objective of this course will be to arouse the creativity of each student with regard to the many possibilities for modern interpretation, notably in reimagining décor, costumes, and Molière’s stances.
The texts studied will be excerpts from the following Molière plays: Tartuffe, The Misanthrope, The Miser, The Bourgeois Gentleman, The Doctor in Spite of Himself, and Don Juan. The students will also be required to read three plays of their choice in their entirety.
Conducted in English.
This course can count toward the cultural specialization or elective within the major requirements in Comparative Literature. However, it is recommended that Comparative Literature majors check with their
DUGS to have this course approved for their individual specialization. This course CANNOT be counted as a core comparative literature course.
In this course we focus on four contemporary novels in which the world of the character, the narrator, or the author, is read through the lens of a literary classic. In each case, the reading and rewriting of the primary text involves temporal and spatial displacements (from the 18th to the 20th century, from Europe to the Carribean and to the South Pacific) that generate shifting perspectives and a constant reshuffling of centre and periphery. Between a reverential affiliation to the past and a creative misreading and rewriting of it, these intertextual encounters with « great » Western literary works insistently raise the questions of identity, originality, and “writing back”. Exploring these questions will therefore also involve drawing on comparative, translation, and postcolonial studies. Conducted in English.
Please note that this course can be counted toward the NYU Media, Culture, & Communication major. Should you choose to enroll in this course, please notify your MCC primary advisor. He or she will make sure this course is accurately reflected in your academic record.
Our course explores the dramatic evolution of French art across 200 tumultuous years, from its classical origins under Louis XIII and Louis XIV's Old Regime, through its transformations across the Enlightenment period, to its radical Neo-Classical revision during the French Revolution, and Romantic reconstruction at the demise of the Napoleonic era and Bourbon Restoration, ending with the 1830 Revolution. Through analysis of the reciprocity between artists and the political-cultural institutions of Paris, we examine the ways by which art ―painting, architecture, popular prints, caricatures―operates as a potent discursive programme within French society. Its role as a dense symbolic language of communication and persuasion, and/or as a critique of social and moral values dominates our investigation. It also serves as a model to investigate the role of contemporary electronic and print media and their influence on our perceptions of society and the representation of power in the global world. Conducted in English.
Lift your eyes as you walk down any street in Paris and you'll soon see a building adorned with the tricolore and the words Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité. Turn a corner and in the distance you'll see the Arc de Triomphe built to the glory of Napoleon's army or the Eiffel tower erected for the centennial of the fall of the Bastille. Even the metro stops, Concorde, Nation, République, Austerlitz, Iéna, echo with the memory of the years of the French Revolution and the First Empire.
But what historic reality does all this evoke? What led some French people to overthrow their age old Monarchy, turn their backs on the Church and launch into a new era of Republican government? What caused others to resist such changes with all their might? And why did the experiment end within 10 years, giving way to military dictatorship and an Empire which spread French rule across Europe.
This semester we shall explore these issues and others pertaining to the Age of the French Revolution & Napoleon through lectures, readings, discussions and site visits in and around the city of Paris. Conducted in English.
This course examines fashion both from its diffusion in a globalized society, and as a form of communication and culture. We will examine how fashion has been valued through social sciences – history and sociology on the one hand, and economy on the other hand, from its production to its consumption. The course will address fashion in terms of issues of consumerism and sustainability in a post industrialized society. Conducted in English.
This course introduces students to the basic structures and practices of media in Europe and their relationship to everyday social life. It pays special attention to the common models and idioms of media in Europe, with an emphasis on national and regional variations. Specific case studies highlight current trends in the production, distribution, consumption, and regulation of media. Topics may include: national or regional idioms in a range of media genres, from entertainment, to advertising and publicity, to news and information; legal norms regarding content and freedom of expression; pirate and independent media; and innovations and emerging practices in digital media. Conducted in English.
This class looks closely at affinities between writers and artists who have frequented Paris cafés and ateliers together from the turn of the 20th Century up to the present day. We explore cross-pollination between the arts, as well as notable points of difference, examining works of art in the context of the dynamic artistic communities which produced them. Students learn to write about sculpture, painting, and film, as well as literature, and keep a journal of their travels within the city to pertinent neighbourhoods, parks, and museums. Our focus will be on five dynamic pairs: Rodin & Rilke, Hemingway & Joyce, Stein & Picasso, Demy & Varda, Proust & Colette. Conducted in English.
An exploration of the historical and on-going contact between France and the Muslim world, including, most notably, the important Muslim population living in France today. The course examines the historical links between France and its colonial possessions in North and West Africa and the Middle East, the place of Islamic religious practice in a traditionally Catholic, and officially secular, France, and the frictions generated by newly politicized forms of Islam. Also considered is the ‘crisis’ of the banlieue, or French suburbs, and the cultural, generational, and religious tensions in evidence there. Conducted in English.
Study of major figures in French philosophy, including, among others, some of: Descartes, Malebranche, Voltaire, Rousseau, Bergson, Beauvoir, Sartre, Camus.
Prerequisite: Logic (PHIL-UA 70) and one introductory course.
Examines various philosophical and psychological approaches to language and meaning, as well as their consequences for traditional philosophical problems in metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics. Discusses primarily 20th-century authors, including Russell, Wittgenstein, and Quine.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 30, or assignment by placement test, or approval of the director.
Assumes a mastery of the fundamental structures of French. May be taken concurrently with FREN-UA9105. Helps the student to develop vocabulary, to improve pronunciation, and to learn new idiomatic expressions. Introduction to corrective phonetics and emphasis on understanding contemporary French through a study of authentic documents; radio and television interviews, advertisements, spontaneous oral productions, etc. Conducted in French.
Sample Syllabus (Coydon)
Sample Syllabus (Guédon)
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 30, assignment by placement test, or approval of the director.
Designed to improve the student's written French and to provide advanced training in French and in comparative grammar. Students are trained to express themselves in a variety of writing situations (diaries, transcriptions, narration, letters, etc.). Focuses on the distinction between spoken and written styles and the problem of contrastive grammar. Emphasis is on accuracy and fluency of usage in the written language. Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 101, or assignment by placement test.
For students with relative fluency in French who wish to further strengthen their pronunciation and command of spoken French. Develops the skills presented in FREN-UA 9101 through an in-depth study of French phonetics (corrective and theoretical), and analysis of the modes of oral discourse in French. Emphasis is on understanding spoken French (modes of argument, persuasion, emotion, etc.) through analysis of authentic documents and development of student discourse in French. Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 105 or assignment by placement test.
Aims to refine students' understanding of and ability to manipulate written French. Students practice summarizing and expanding articles from French magazines and papers and learn how to organize reports and reviews in French. Focuses on the distinction between spoken and written styles and the problem of contrastive grammar. Emphasis on accuracy and fluency of usage in the written language. Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 30 or assignment by placement test.
Use of drama and theatre techniques to help students overcome inhibitions in their oral use of language. Exercises and activities are designed to improve pronunciation, intonation, expression, and body language. Students work in collaboration with the professor, trained in the experimental methods of the French director Jacques Lecocq. This semester's focus will be to analyze and reenact excerpts from Molière’s plays. Conducted in French.
Prerequisite: FREN-UA 30, FREN-UA 105, or permission of the instructor.
Designed for students who wish to become familiar with the specialized language used in French business. Emphasis is on oral and written communication and the acquisition of a business and commercial vocabulary dealing with the varied activities of a commercial firm: advertising, transportation, banking, etc. Group work in simulated business situations and exposure to "authentic" spoken materials are stressed. Qualified students have the option of taking the Exam of the Chamber of French Commerce at the end of the course. Conducted in French.
NYU Art History Students: This course counts for Art History elective credit.
This course studies the rise of modern and contemporary art in Europe in relation to its cultural, historical and social contexts. The works of Matisse, Picasso, Duchamp, Dali, Miro and Magritte, among others, are considered. The course includes both class lectures with slides and museum visits. Conducted in French.
NYU Art History students: This course counts for Art History elective credit.
Paris of the 19th and early 20th centuries developed into a major urban center, in part because of the promise of liberty that drew people there following the upheavals of the Revolution. The urban renewal that occurred under the Second Empire in the mid-19th century in particular transformed the capital into a modern city of innovation and spectacle. While the official arts reflected the tastes and priorities of successive governments and the emergent bourgeoisie, it was the avant-garde that most marked the city as a site of resistance and daring. In this course we study these different art movements as they relate to the city of Paris, studying the sites, movements, and transformations that helped shape the modern arts. Conducted in French.
We begin with a definition of the term "democracy" as developed by the Athenian City-State in the 5th century before Christ, before moving on to discuss its reappraisal by such theoreticians of the 17th century as Locke, or of the Enlightenment, such as Montesquieu and Rousseau. Their versions, indeed, serve as the basis for the French Revolution of 1789. A long and difficult process, democracy needed nearly a century before establishing itself in France. Drawing on numerous examples from 19th and 20th century history, we will try to understand why the great contributions of democracy, such as universal suffrage and the concept of individual liberty, were so difficult to put into operation. We will also consider why these "givens" are still fragile. Conducted in French.
In this course students read masterpieces of French literature from the French Revolution to the end of the twentieth century. Works are considered from various historical, aesthetic and theoretical perspectives. Texts include:Le Père Goriot (Balzac); Madame Bovary (Flaubert); Les Faux-Monnayeurs (Gide); La Nausée (Sartre); Le Ravissement de Lol V. Stein (Duras), and Du côté de chez Swan I (Proust), which will be the subject of a final essay. Conducted in French.
The course considers the concept of “French civilization” in both its mythical and real aspects. The first half of the course focuses on the political, socio-economic, and cultural history of France in the modern period, from roughly 1870 to the 1980. The second half of the course looks more closely at the contemporary period, focusing on the various ‘crises’ and transitions that have marked France during the past 20 years. Topics include the challenges of the post-colonial period (immigration, la francophonie, questions of identity), France in and of the European Union, France and globalization, and social issues in current events (the status of women, la banlieue, social exclusion). Conducted in French.
Through a multidisciplinary approach, the course will address the different political, economic, historical and sociological issues raised by the current situation in the Arab world in order to determine the French and American answers especially in the context of the Arab spring and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The course will offer insights and analyses on the different roles which are played by France and the United States on the issues of youth, women, and Modern Islam in the Arab World and on how their soft power is perceived by the Arab countries and their populations. By addressing the foreign policies that have been articulated in the region, we will also bring into light the dichotomy between the “old” and the “new” diplomacy.
Since the 17th century Paris has been as a city of and for the theatre, from the great sites and
events that have marked theatre history, to the spectacle and fantasy that the city imparts.
In this course, we study the great works of French theatre, from the classics to the very
contemporary, through readings, performances, and visits in and around Paris to the lieux
de mémoire of the theatre world. Through the study of works by Corneille, Molière, Hugo,
Feydeau, Ionesco, Beckett, Sartre, and others, we consider how Paris has been integral to and
shaped by the world of French theatre. Visits include such prestigious venues as the Comédie
Française, the grands boulevards where Parisians discovered Shakespeare in the age of Sarah
Bernhardt, the remains of the Théâtre du Marais where Corneille performed his plays, or
Versailles where Molière helped lead the grand spectacle that was life under Louis XIV.
Conducted in French.
An analysis of North and French West African cinema. In this course, we consider the aesthetic and political choices faced by African filmmakers working in the post-Independence period. Questions concerning tradition and modernity, the search for a collective and/or national identity, emigration, exile and return, history and memory, will frame our approach. Conducted in French.
An introduction to the problems of gender as they have been expressed in France. Beginning with an historical overview, we consider the category of ‘woman’ as it was defined from the Revolution to the founding of French feminism at the end of the 19th century. The second part of the course is devoted to an exploration of gender as a political issue during the past 20 years, through consideration of such topics as parité, prostitution, colonialism, post-colonialism, and queer studies. Conducted in French.
Art History students: This course counts for Art History elective credit.
In this course we explore the contemporary arts in France in their historic and social context. Beginning with current trends, we attempt to situate what’s new within a longer tradition of artistic production. Themes studied include the nature of the object, the monochrome, the body, the idea of nature, personal mythologies, the importance of light. The course includes visits to contemporary galleries and museums. Conducted in French.
As major metropolises, Paris and New York are deeply engaged in processes of globalization: each has to stay competitive, to accumulate wealth, to hold on to its inhabitants as well as to attract tourists, business professionals, students, and immigrants. Each dreams of one day becoming a “green” city. Danger also exists in both of these cities, amplified by rumor and fantasy. In this course we will study these phenomena through the analysis of novels, films, television series, artwork, and architecture, to ask how various representations of the city have changed and been managed over time, by diverse social actors and observers. Conducted in French.
Priority: September 15
Regular: October 15
Applications received after October 15 will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Admission will be granted only when space is available and time allows for required travel documents to be attained.