Course Spotlight: Migration in Francophone Literary and Cinematic Narratives

Course Description

While Migration has always been a human predicament from Antiquity to the present days, it has intersected more than often with slavery, colonialization, imperialism, capitalism, and globalization. More broadly, migration has intensified the global movements of people, goods, ideas, cultural practices to epic proportions. By examining theoretical reflections, novels and movies, this course will engage with critical concepts such as postcolonialism, Francophone and World literature, while tackling various discourses and practices related to migration through these main questions:

  • How Francophone narratives deconstruct dominant national discourses in order to create alternative ones?
  • Viewed as an important marker of integration, the language functions as an ambivalent site where subjectivities and trajectories are remodeled. What are the politics of language related to migration?
  • To what extent questions of diffusion, circulation, and reception are relevant to cultural productions on and of migration?
  • What are the most recent dominant discourses on race, gender, class and ethnicity-migration nexus, which are crucial to our understanding of the place, role and impact of Francophone literature and culture in the re-making of the world cultural production?
  • How does migration transform subjects and subjectivities by negotiating their in-betweenness?

On different levels, either aesthetically, ontologically, socially or ideologically, what is lost and gained through migration?

Course Details

French 642: Migration in Francophone Literary and Cinematic Narratives
3 credits
Monday, 3:00-5:30PM
Fall 2018

Sample Readings and Films

  • Fatou Diome, Le ventre de l’Atlantique. LGF, 2005.
  • Assia Djebar, La disparition de la langue française. Albin Michel, 2003.
  • Gisèle Pineau, L’exil selon Julia. Le livre de Poche, 2000.
  • Jaques Poulin, Volkswagen Blues. Actes Sud, 1999.
  • Homi Bhabha (1999) “The Third Space: Interview with Home Bhabha.” In Identity: Community, Culture, Difference.
  • James Clifford (1994) “Diasporas.” Cultural Anthropology3.
  • Hafid Gafaiti (2006). Migrances, diasporas et transculturalités Francophones. (excerpts)
  • Stuart Hall (1990). “Cultural Identity and Diaspora” in Identity: Community, Culture, Difference.
  • Jean-Marc Moura (1999). Littératures francophones et théorie postcoloniale. (excerpts)
  • Salman Rushdie (1991). Imaginary Homelands. (excerpts)
  • Ousmane Sembène, La Noire.. (1966).
  • Yamina Benguigui, Mémoires d’immigrés : L’Héritage maghrébin (1997).
  • Moussa Touré, La Pirogue (2012).
  • Abdellatif Kechich, La graine et le mulet (2007).
  • Denis Chouinard, L’Ange du Goudron(2001).

About the Instructor

Nevine El Nossery’s specializations and research interests include Francophone Literatures and Cultures (especially North Africa and Quebec); Postcolonial Studies; Middle Eastern Literatures and Cultures; Photography and Literature; art and politics. Her teaching includes courses on women and self-writing, women and exile, trauma in literature and visual art.