Yesterday’s Classics/Today’s Movies


This course coordinates the presentation of several recent films that re-cycle and re-interpret, according to today’s esthetics and values, some of the most famous love stories and philosophical thoughts of the French Classical Age, paired with the readings of the texts that are the direct sources or inspirations for these films. We will read the relevant texts; then we will view the films; and we will discuss our observations on both together. The aim of the course is to get to know the French “classical” world of the 17th century, and to explore how certain same themes and preoccupations, articulated at that time, continue to resonate for the movie and theater public in France today. Through this analysis of old texts paired with the contemporary films they have inspired, we will attempt to arrive at an idea of what French 17th century cultural production still represents for the French bourgeoisie and remaining aristocracy today, and its role in the ongoing shaping of a specifically French “mentalité” of “longue durée.” Conducted entirely in French.

Film Reel
Crosslisting Numbers

VMS 312

AMI 262

Curriculum Codes