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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : European Languages and Cultures - French

Undergraduate Course: Love and Melancholy in Early Modern France (Ordinary) (ELCF09017)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 9 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course will explore, through the study of literary, philosophical and medical texts, attitudes towards love and melancholy in the Renaissance period.
Course description This course will explore, through the study of literary, philosophical and medical texts, attitudes towards love and melancholy in the Renaissance period. Love in its various forms (between friends, lovers, husband and wife, love between man and God, self-love) is a pervasive theme of Renaissance literature and thought. In sixteenth century and beyond, love was seen as a cause and a species of melancholy, the name of an illness and of a temperament that fascinated contemporaries because of its association with genius and madness. We will examine in particular the impact that philosophical and medical theories of melancholy had on the treatment of love in the literature of the period. Through the close analysis of a selection of texts belonging to a variety of genres - the nouvelle, the sonnet, the philosophical treatise - the course will aim to introduce students to some of the most original authors of the early modern period in France.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: French 2 Literature and Culture (ELCF08012) AND French 2 Language (ELCF08013)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Ordinary Students and Visiting Students only
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesIn order to be eligible to take 4th Year Options, Visiting Students should have the equivalent of at least two years of study at University level of the appropriate language(s) and culture(s).
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) ***100% Coursework***
60%: Final essay (1500 words)
20%: participation in discussion boards [seminar question threads each week]
20%:Oral presentation (individual or in groups)
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate knowledge of a range of literary genres and forms (novellas, sonnet collection, philosophical treatise, medical treatise, philosophical essay) from the end of the 15th to the beginning of the 17th century, and the ability to place them in their historical and cultural contexts.
  2. Undertake textual analysis through the use of precise terminology and techniques, and identify literary and cultural changes as reflected in the texts studied.
  3. Identify key literary motifs, themes and concepts.
  4. Select, appraise and use a range of secondary sources and relevant theoretical perspectives to further the analysis of set texts.
  5. Compose, both orally and in writing, coherent arguments on the representation of key themes and concepts in the works studied.
Reading List
Marsile Ficin, Commentaire sur le Banquet de Platon - De l'Amour (Discours II, VI et VII), trad. Pierre Laurens, Les Belles Lettres, 2002.
Marguerite de Navarre, Heptaméron (nouvelles: 2-3-8-9-10;19; 24; 40; 64; 70), Garnier Flammarion.
Ronsard, Les Amours (we will only study Part III: Sonnets pour Hélène, Gallimard, collection "Gallimard poésie" (please make sure that you buy the "Gallimard Poésie" edition).
Jacques Ferrand, Traité de l'essence et guérison de l'amour ou De la mélancolie érotique (1610), Economica, 2001.
Montaigne, 'Sur des vers de Virgile', Essais III, Folio classique, Gallimard, Paris, 2009.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills By the end of the course, students will have further developed their skills in the areas of research and enquiry, personal and intellectual autonomy, communication, and personal effectiveness. For further specification of these skills see the university¿s graduate and employability skills framework at
KeywordsDELC O Love&Mel
Course organiserDr Emmanuelle Lacore-Martin
Tel: (0131 6)51 1148
Course secretaryMrs Lina Gordyshevskaya
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