Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

French Ph.D.

French & Italian
College of Liberal Arts
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Department of French and Italian, 314 Folwell Hall, 9 Pleasant Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-626-0418; fax: 612-624-6021).
Email: frit@umn.edu
  • Program Type: Doctorate
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2020
  • Length of program in credits: 78
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
  • Degree: Doctor of Philosophy
Along with the program-specific requirements listed below, please read the General Information section of this website for requirements that apply to all major fields.
The French PhD program covers all areas of French literature and culture from the renaissance to the present. Traditional areas of study and scholarship are inflected by the faculty's interests, expertise, and research in areas that are shaping the discipline of French studies. The program, which fosters interdisciplinary research, has particular strengths in literary and cultural studies, critical theory, feminist studies, early modern studies, cinema studies, disability studies, and francophone studies.
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
An MA in French (or equivalent) is required.
Other requirements to be completed before admission:
Applicants have generally completed at least 18 credits in French literature and culture. Prospective students whose undergraduate degree is in another field, but who have taken substantial coursework in French and are strongly motivated to pursue literary studies, are invited to contact the director of graduate studies in French.
Special Application Requirements:
Applicants must submit three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with their scholarship and research potential, a complete set of official transcripts, a sample of their academic writing, and a written statement of research interests and goals. Students may be contacted for evidence of spoken French proficiency (via a phone interview or other). International student applicants should also submit scores for the TOEFL or equivalent English proficiency testing program. The program offers funding packages; see https://cla.umn.edu/french-italian/graduate/funding for information. Submission of all application materials submission by January 10 ensures consideration for fellowships and graduate instructorships for the next academic year. New teaching assistants and fellowship recipients are only admitted for fall semester; others may be admitted in mid-year.
International applicants must submit score(s) from one of the following tests:
  • TOEFL
    • Internet Based - Total Score: 79
    • Internet Based - Writing Score: 21
    • Internet Based - Reading Score: 19
    • Paper Based - Total Score: 550
  • IELTS
    • Total Score: 6.5
  • MELAB
    • Final score: 80
Key to test abbreviations (TOEFL, IELTS, MELAB).
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
45 credits are required in the major.
9 credits are required outside the major.
24 thesis credits are required.
This program may be completed with a minor.
Use of 4xxx courses toward program requirements is permitted under certain conditions with adviser approval.
Language Requirement: Proficiency in foreign language other than French
A minimum GPA of 2.80 is required for students to remain in good standing.
Courses offered on both the A/F and S/N grade basis must be taken A/F, with a minimum grade of B- earned for each course.
Required Courses (6 credits)
Take the following courses:
FRIT 5999 - Teaching of French and Italian: Theory and Practice (3.0 cr)
FREN 5995 - Directed Teaching (1.0 cr)
FREN 5265 - Graduate Proseminar in French Studies (2.0 cr)
Major Electives (39 credits)
Select seminars, which must include at least 1 seminar from 3 of the 4 periods, in consultation with the advisor. Other courses may be substituted with advisor approval.
1500 to 1800
FREN 8200 - Topics in Early Modern French & Francophone Literatures and Cultures (3.0 cr)
FREN 8271 - The Novel of the Ancien Regime (3.0 cr)
FRIT 5240 - Topics in French & Italian Literatures & Cultures (3.0 cr)
1800 to Present
FREN 8210 - Narrative, History, and Memory: Topics (3.0 cr)
FREN 8220 - Staging the Common (3.0 cr)
FREN 8291 - Jean Genet's Writings and French Institutions (3.0 cr)
FREN 8371 - The Rule of Reason, The Reign of Madness: Readings in Early Modern France (3.0 cr)
Francophone/Global French
FREN 5470 - Post/Colonial Francophone Literatures (3.0 cr)
FREN 8230 - Critical Issues: Criticism and Thought (3.0-9.0 cr)
FREN 8240 - Critical Issues: French and Francophone Cinema (3.0-9.0 cr)
FREN 8280 - Ethics and Aesthetics in French and Francophone Writing (3.0 cr)
FREN 8410 - Topics in Quebecois Literature (3.0 cr)
FREN 8420 - Critical Issues: Francophone Literature (3.0 cr)
Other French Culture
FREN 5350 - Topics in Literature and Culture (3.0 cr)
Outside Coursework (9 credits)
Select 9 credits outside the major in consultation with the advisor. Foreign language credits cannot be applied to this requirement.
Thesis Credits
Take 24 doctoral thesis credits.
FREN 8888 - Thesis Credit: Doctoral (1.0-24.0 cr)
 
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FRIT 5999 - Teaching of French and Italian: Theory and Practice
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Theoretical and practical aspects of language learning and teaching applied to French and Italian. Includes history of foreign language teaching in 20th-century United States. Taught in English.
FREN 5995 - Directed Teaching
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Grading Basis: S-N or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Directed teaching.
FREN 5265 - Graduate Proseminar in French Studies
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course introduces new graduate students to the goals, skills, practices, standards and other components of academic careers in the fields of French and Francophone studies, mostly in the US context. It is an introduction to all major aspects of our profession. The seminar combines readings, lectures and presentations by the instructor and guest lecturers, collective discussions, individual and group research, and writing assignments. The final product of the seminar is a talk ready to be delivered at a graduate or national conference, or a book review or short article ready to be submitted for publication.
FREN 8200 - Topics in Early Modern French & Francophone Literatures and Cultures
Credits: 3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Critical issues relating to the early modern period in French and Francophone literatures and cultures. Content varies by instructor.
FREN 8271 - The Novel of the Ancien Regime
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Considers major novels of the 17th and 18th centuries in connection with developments in such areas as esthetic theory, intellectual currents, social transformations, and reading practices.
FRIT 5240 - Topics in French & Italian Literatures & Cultures
Credits: 3.0 [max 12.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Topics dealing with intersections of French & Italian literatures & cultures. Taught in English.
FREN 8210 - Narrative, History, and Memory: Topics
Credits: 3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Significance of narrative paradigm in literature, history, and cultural memory. Specific topics/texts treated vary. Taught in French.
FREN 8220 - Staging the Common
Credits: 3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Developments in 20th-century drama/performance in relation to French theatrical tradition. Post-1945 avant-garde innovation, interculturalism in contemporary theater. Specific topics/texts vary. Taught in French.
FREN 8291 - Jean Genet's Writings and French Institutions
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Jean Genet's writings at the crossroads of several disciplines (politics, psychoanalysis, religion, and law). Genet's novels, dramas, and political essays explore the power of institutional settings and strategies imagined by individuals to short-circuit their impact.
FREN 8371 - The Rule of Reason, The Reign of Madness: Readings in Early Modern France
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Relationship between construction of reason and madness in philosophy, legitimation of political rule, and the institution of literature in early modern France.
FREN 5470 - Post/Colonial Francophone Literatures
Credits: 3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Francophone literature from North Africa, Africa, and the Caribbean of the colonial and/or post-colonial eras in the light of relevant literary and cultural theories. prereq: 3111 or above
FREN 8230 - Critical Issues: Criticism and Thought
Credits: 3.0 -9.0 [max 27.0]
Typically offered: Fall Odd Year
Critical issues relating to works in criticism/thought related to French/Francophone literature, philosophy or culture.
FREN 8240 - Critical Issues: French and Francophone Cinema
Credits: 3.0 -9.0 [max 27.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Fall Odd Year
Critical issues relating to French/Francophone cinema.
FREN 8280 - Ethics and Aesthetics in French and Francophone Writing
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Explores the question of philosophy's engagement with literature in the twentieth century. Traces this from Greek Antiquity (Plato, Aristotle), especially the moment of differentiation between logos and mythos, rational speech and fiction. Focuses on the breakdown of the borders between these two regimes of discourse in modernity. Explores the limits of the porosity between the two disciplines, especially by examining, instead of philosophy's blind acquiescence to the discourse of fiction, its modalities of resistance to figurative language.
FREN 8410 - Topics in Quebecois Literature
Credits: 3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Quebecois in relation to other North American literatures and to Francophone literature produced elsewhere in the world. Specific topics/texts vary. Taught in French.
FREN 8420 - Critical Issues: Francophone Literature
Credits: 3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Critical issues relating to literature of Francophone world. Specific topics/texts vary. Taught in French.
FREN 5350 - Topics in Literature and Culture
Credits: 3.0 [max 12.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Problem, period, author, or topic of interest. See Class Schedule. prereq: 3101 or equiv
FREN 8888 - Thesis Credit: Doctoral
Credits: 1.0 -24.0 [max 100.0]
Grading Basis: No Grade
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
(No description) prereq: max 18 cr per semester or summer, 24 cr required