It is commonly accepted that identity or a sense of self is constructed by and through narrative – the stories we tell each other and ourselves about our lives. This module explores the complex relationships that exist between memory, nostalgia, writing and identity in a range of twentieth-century autobiographical and first- and third-person fictional works in French. These texts foreground issues of childhood, memory, history, and trauma in the construction of identity.
This module appears in the following module collections.
Total Contact Hours: 20
Method of assessment
Critical Writing Exercise (500 words) – 20%
Essay (2,500 words) – 60%
Presentation (15 minutes) – 20%
Indicative Reading List:
Ernaux, A. (2007). La Place. Paris: Gallimard.
Germain, S. (2001). L'Enfant Méduse. Paris: Gallimard.
Kofman, S. (2005). Rue Ordener, rue Labat. Paris: Galilée.
Perec, G. (2001). W ou le souvenir d'enfance. Paris: Denoël.
Proust, M. (2001) Combray. In: Du côté de chez Swann. Paris: Gallimard.
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
Explore in depth a range of twentieth-century literary works in French that reflect on the nature of childhood, memory, and memories of childhood;
Reflect critically on the role and significance of memory and childhood in a variety of literary genres;
Demonstrate a critical understanding of the narratological import of the relationship between the fictional and the autobiographical;
Demonstrate a critical appreciation of the ways in which memory can bear upon literary form;
Demonstrate confident analytical skills for the study of narrative technique and structure;
Demonstrate their ability to read in French.
Back to top
Credit level 5. Intermediate level module usually taken in Stage 2 of an undergraduate degree.
- ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
- The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.