The Department of French and Italian

Courses in French and Italian

F C 341 • Arab Francophonie

36820 • Drumsta, Emily
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM PAR 308
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In this class, we will explore French-language cultural productions by authors of Arab origin from across France’s former colonial and mandate territories, including Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Syria, and Lebanon. In dialogue with postcolonial theory, we will study the fraught relationship many of these authors have with French language, literature, and culture: for many, a sign of colonial oppression, but also a gateway to global connections beyond the Arab world, including South-South connections with Africa, the Caribbean, and Southeast Asia. Other topics will include: the question of hybridity, translatability and untranslatability, gender and power across languages and cultures, problems with the “liberation” discourse for Arab women writers, Arabic as a sacred and non-sacred language, the place of Islam in these cultural productions, fiction that “writes back” to empire, and questions of audience and market for Arab-Francophone writing (i.e. what Arab authors/texts sell best in France and why?) 

By the end of the course, students will be able to identify and summarize key works by Arab Francophone writers from a number of national contexts across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). They will also have the necessary critical background and close-reading skills to analyze these works in conversation with postcolonial theory. Through short weekly reading responses, students will engage closely with every assigned text, learning to hone their creative thinking skills. Class discussions will be student-centered, and rather than working from professor-supplied prompts, students will instead develop their own topics for the midterm and final papers, in consultation with the professor. 

Required Texts: 

Andrée Chedid, The Sixth Day  

Youssef Chahine, The Sixth Day (film adaptation) 

Vénus Khoury-Ghata, Alphabets of Sand 

Abdelkébir Khatibi, Love in Two Languages 

Driss Chraïbi, The Simple Past 

Assia Djebar, Fantasia: An Algerian Cavalcade (excerpts) 

Abdelfattah Kilito, Thou Shalt Not Speak My Language 

Mehdi Charef, Tea in the Harem 

F C 342 • French Through Coding

36825 • Bullock, Barbara
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MEZ 1.204
II (also listed as FR 392K)
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The goal of this course, “French Through Coding”, is to teach students basic computational tools and skills to automatically process language so that they can explore aspects of contemporary foreign language usage that are of interest to them. Students will engage in independent investigation regarding both linguistic and coding topics. The language topics they research will be generated by the students themselves, based on what they have learned about French language and culture in their studies and experiences abroad. While they will be taught basic python in the course, they will also independently work to ‘hack’, manipulate, and debug the code snippets they have and those that they can find on-line using the resources that all coders exploit like Stack Exchange.

Students enrolled in FR392K are expected to have a more advanced knowledge of French linguistics and a greater proficiency in French. They are also expected to come to the course with a topic, relevant to their main research interest(s), that can be profitably explored using Natural Language Processing techniques. The goal for graduate students is to expand their analytical toolkit so that they develop skills that will be helpful for generating novel findings, and often novel data, in their area of specialization.

Students will be asked to complete all coding assignments and to complete a research project on a cultural, linguistic, or literary topic.

Students enrolled in FR392K will be required to (1) formulate a research proposal that can be addressed through NLP techniques, (2) create or identify a relevant corpus to explore their research question (3) develop a workflow to read, clean, process, and analyze data and (4) write up their findings in a short paper (~4,000) suitable for presentation at an academic conference.

Courses in French and Italian:

To find a course description, select a "Field of Study" such as "FR" for French or "ITL" for Italian from the dropdown menu. Select a semester from the dropdown menu as well. 

Fields of Study: 

F C = French Civilization
FR = French
ITC = Italian Civilization
ITL = Italian

Useful Links

Current Course Schedule Information ( 
Current Catalog Information (
FRIT Course Spotlights
Undergraduate Advising Information
Registration Information Sheet (RIS)


Undergraduate Academic Advisor

Heather Peterson
BEN 2.108
Advising Appointments


Undergraduate Faculty Advisors

Undergraduate Italian Faculty Advisor
Antonella Olson
HRH 2.106B (office currently closed)

Undergraduate French Faculty Advisor
Heather Pelletier
HRH 3.112A (office currently closed)


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  • Department of French and Italian

    University of Texas at Austin
    201 W 21st Street STOP B7600
    HRH 2.114A
    Austin, TX 78712-1800