Topics – French Literature (3) Théâtre et politique au Grand Siècle
Whether their works were set in Ancient Greece, Imperial Rome, medieval Spain or seventeenth-century Paris, contemporary politics played a considerable role in the composition and reception of the plays of Corneille, Racine and Molière. In this course we will examine, for example, the rise of absolutism in France and dramatic depictions of the monarch; the conflict between public and private life for rulers and subjects; the impact of La Fronde on literature; and the very timely question of the role of religious faith in politics. Plays we will study include Corneille, Le Cid, Cinna and Polyeucte; Racine, Bérénice, Iphigénie, and Phèdre; Mme de Villedieu, Le Favory; and Molière, Le Tartuffe. Additional required readings will provide historical background and modern critical perspectives.
Restrictions: open only to graduate students.