2017-2018 Catalog

MUSC 266 French Culture 1589­-1848

In this course we study French culture from the reign of "Good King Henry, the Green Gallant," Henry IV (1589­1610) and his invigoration of the arts and French cuisine, to the July Monarchy (1830­1848) and the novels of Balzac, the photographic process of Daguerre, and the music of Chopin.  We will also pay particular attention to painting (from Poussin's classical landscapes to Corot's Romantic ones), dance (from the codification of couples dancing in the court of Louis XIV to the emergence of classical ballet in 1830s Paris), philosophy (from Descartes's dualism to Cousin's eclecticism), theater (from Molière's The Bourgeois Gentleman to Dumas fils's The Lady of the Camellias), fashion (from Louis XIV's introduction of huge wigs of curled hair to the Empire style under Napoléon), and food (from the start of haute cuisine to the invention of the restaurant and gastronomy).  Throughout, we will concern ourselves with the interplay of these cultural productions, and how the ever­evolving city of Paris served as their crucible.


4 units

Core Requirements Met

  • Regional Focus
  • Fine Arts
  • Pre-1800