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This subject offers high-level French students a course in advanced conversation structure and analysis. It will build on the linguistic and cultural competences acquired in previous levels to develop greater awareness of how the historical, intercultural, political and social aspects of language impact on oral communication in French.
The program will focus on two main areas of conversation: the refinement of conversation as an expression of elegance, intelligence and “esprit” during the Ancien Régime and the political dimensions of contemporary conversation and debate. It will include material on significant cultural taboos and the historical underpinnings of sensitive topics, as well as politeness and registers. Current affairs and contemporary debates will be analysed with an emphasis on situational contexts to consider factors such as goals, intentions, situational constraints and contextual expectancies.
The aims of this subject are to understand the historical significance of the value placed on conversational skills in French society. It will build on the introduction to argumentation in French 5 in oral communication, while strengthening aural comprehension competences. Reading and writing will be maintained, and students will refine their understanding of the differences between the written and the spoken language and of how to move from one to the other.
Intended learning outcomes
On successful completion of this subject, students should:
- have achieved a high level of competency in the art of French conversation in different registers;
- be able to show awareness of the relationship between conversational and argumentative styles in French;
- be able to show awareness of appropriate turn-taking in different social circumstances;
- have developed understanding of the status attributed to the art of conversation in France;
- have developed skills in French argumentative discourse in both oral and written form.
At the completion of this subject, students should:
- have developed skills in independent learning;
- have developed skills in critical thinking and in the interpretation of texts;
- have an understanding of the social and cultural sensitivity of language use in particular contexts;
- have the ability to appreciate different cultural contexts present in French-speaking communities;
- be able to time manage and plan: through managing and organising workloads for required and recommended reading, essay and assignment completion and revision for examinations.
Last updated: 25 August 2020