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FR4116 Mediaeval Marvels: The Exotic, the East and the Other in Mediaeval French Literature

SCOTCAT credits:15
Academic year(s):2017/8
SCQF Level 10
Planned timetable:To be arranged.

Relations between the mediaeval Occident and Orient were highly complex during a period that saw violent crusades and interracial conflicts. Cases abound where notions of East and West merge and the East itself may even appear as no more than fantasy. Alongside the hideous monsters common to medieval epic, throughout the 12th-13th centuries there are many examples of fascination with the East that betray a desire to emulate its opulence as well as a fear of the foreign. This module consequently aims to introduce students to a variety of literary representations of the mediaeval East and its residents, focussing above all on representations of cultural difference, the marvellous, and the exotic. The set texts give students the chance to engage with theoretical questions of otherness, fantasy and gender in relation to the specific historical period in question and to develop their ability to work critically with primary materials.

Place in programme(s) and relationship to other modules


Optional for all degrees involving French

UG Pre-requisite(s):Permission of the French Honours Adviser

Learning and teaching methods and delivery

Weekly contact:Seminar, lecture and 1 surgery hour.
Total module hours:
  • Scheduled learning: 16
  • Guided independent study: 134

Assessment pattern

UG As defined by QAA:
  • Written examinations: 0%
  • Practical examinations: 0%
  • Coursework: 100%
UG As used by St Andrews:Coursework = 100%
UG Re-assessment:Coursework = 100%


Module coordinator:Dr V Turner
Module teaching staff:Dr V Turner