Medieval French Literature - 1st semester


Students are expected to:
1. Read French medieval literary works and understand the main features of French medieval literature ;
2. Analyse representative works of the main medieval genres;
3. Understand historical and cultural contexts of medieval texts as well as their main hermeneutical issues;
4. understand poetical and rhetorical aspects of the texts of the syllabus;
5. understand how codes and values are relevant in the organization of a new poetic system;
6. become skilled in the analysis of poetic aspects and imaginary contexts of medieval works.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Ana Paiva Morais


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language



not applicable


Boutet, D. (1991). Formes littéraires et conscience historique. Paris: PUF.
——— (2003). Histoire de la littérature française du Moyen Âge. Paris: Honoré Champion, Unichamp-Essentiel.
Cerquiglini-Toulet, J., Lestrignant, F., Forestier, G. et Bury, E. (2007). La littérature française: dynamique & histoire, vol. I. Gallimard: Folio, essais, pp. 47-109.
Akehurst, F.R.P. and Davis, J. M., eds. (1995). A Handbook of the Troubadours. Berkeley-Los Angeles-London: California University Press.
James-Raoul, D. (2007). Chrétien de Troyes, la griffe d’un style, Paris: Champion, «Nouvelle Bibliothèque du Moyen Âge ».
Le Goff, J. (1991). L´Imaginaire médiéval. Paris: Gallimard, Bibliothèque des Histoires.
Walter, P. (1990). Le gant de verre. Le Mythe de Tristan et Iseut. La Gacilly: Artus.
Whalen, L. E. (2008). Marie de France and the Poetics of Memory. Washington: The Catholic University of America Press.

Teaching method

1. Lectures on the main items on the syllabus focusing on cultural and literary aspects of the texts in the syllabus; regular use of appropriate web resources shall be encouraged and the Moddle platform will be a used as a main tool for individual and collective work;
2. Critical supervised discussion in the classroom of the texts in the syllabus;
3. Individual tutorial supervision of oral and written work.
Seminars: 60%, lectures: 40%
In class teaching.

Evaluation method

The knowledge acquired, the competences for critical and conceptual analysis of texts and the amount of individual work will specifically be taken into account.
1. Participation in classroom discussions of topics of the syllabus - 20%;
2. One written classroom assignment - 40%;
3. written essay to be discussed in class - 40%.

Subject matter

1.Literature as value:
1.1.Chivalry Codes in the Chanson de Geste - Chanson de Roland;
1.2.The Rules of Love:
- Troubadour Poetry – Guillaume de Poitiers, Jaufré Rudel, Marcabru, Bernard de Ventadour; - The Arts of Love – Traité de l ́Amour Courtois, André Le Chapelain;
2.Image and Value – Love and imagination:
2.1. Arthurian romance – Chrétien de Troyes, Le Conte du Graal;
2.2.Dichotomies of Love – Béroul, Le Roman de Tristan;
2.3. love and image - the Lai de Narcisse
3.Subverting and Confirming Codes:
3.1. Parody in comic and obscene texts – os fabliaux
4. Exemplarity and allegory – the fables of Marie de France.