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Course Description
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French 300: French Civilization
American Business School Paris
Paris, France

Subject Area(s) Level(s) Instruction in Credits Contact Hours Prerequisites
French 300 English 3 45 None

Wine, cheese, baguette, Hexagon, Marianne, Asterix, all symbols (recognizable or not) of France. This course is a look into what constitutes the roots of French society. An outsider is certainly familiar with some aspects of French culture, but in your stay here we will try to uncover the more subtle sides of French civilization that make the French so complex. The backdrop of the course is the History of Paris, and will be supplemented with field trips to help you discover the city and its environs.

Class time will be divided into 3 parts :

1/ Current events – keeping track of current events, political, economic, social, etc. will give us insight into how the French function and what their preoccupations are.
2/ History – lectures will cover the major periods from Roman Gaul to the present day.
3/ Culture & Institutions – through student presentations, we will look at various artists, influential people and institutions that have forged France.

Seven Ages of Paris, Alistair Horne, Pan Books, London, 2003

30% Press releases : each week you will be required to write a press release summarizing a recent political, economic, or social event.
30% Presentations/report : each student will choose a topic and give a 10-15 minute presentation to the class, as well as write a 5-10 page report.
30% Final Exam : a cumulative exam will be given at the end of the semester. The questions will be chosen from a list of 10 topics handed out in the form of a worksheet at mid-semester.
10% Worksheet : a one-page summary of each of the 10 topics, from which will be drawn the final exam.

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