HFMK03023U FM/CEMES, Module 2: Culture, genrer and aesthetics: Immigration, Radicalisation and Diversity in France, as portrayed by French Cinema

Volume 2015/2016

Master in Film and Media Studies

Modern European Studies (CEMES)


In January 2015, Paris was hit by a string of deadly terrorist attacks, all committed by people born and raised in France. While radicalisation is by no means unique to France, the course will try to get a grasp of the specific French circumstances that may lead descendants of immigrants, typically from the former French colonies, to embrace Jihadism, but also of the multicultural French society in more general terms. We will do so by looking at some of the many - primarily fiction - films on immigration and diversity that have been produced in France over the past few decades. None of these films pretend to present scientifically based 'truths', but through their multifarious stories they may be able to nuance the mass media's often quite simplistic coverage of these topics. We will discuss the thematic, generical, aesthetic and narrational strategies adopted by the films against the historical and social context in which they were created.

Although the specific focus is on France and French films, similar or different tendencies in other European countries and cinemas will be addressed for comparison. Students are welcome to write their assignments on, say, British, German or Scandinavian films, just as it is of course also possible to write on other audiovisual products - such as television shows or computer games - of relevance to the overall topic.

The theoretical basis of the course is a mix of Cultural Studies (Hall, Bhabha, Naficy et al.) and more form-oriented approaches to genre, style, narration and/or spectator involvement (Thompson, Bordwell, Smith, Deleuze et al.).

Learning Outcome

Master in Film and Media Studies 2013-curriculum:
Module 2: Culture, genres and aesthetics: HFMK03021E 
Module 7: Optionel subject 1: HFMK03131E
Module 7: Optionel subject 2: HFMK03141E
Module 7: Optional subject 3: HFMK03151E
Module 7: Optional subject 4: HFMK03161E

Curriculum for the Master’s Programme in Film Studies, The 2008 Curriculum:
Module 6: Optionel subject 1: HFVA04171E
Module 6: Optionel subject 1: HFVA04181E
Module 6: Optionel subject 2: HFVA04191E
Module 6: Optionel subject 2: HFVA04201E

Curriculum for Master's Programme in Media Studies, The 2008 Curriculum:
Module 3: Media, aesthetics and genres: HMEK03131E

Modern European Studies, MA-level (CEMES):

Modern European Studies 1 (Subject element HHIK03701E) [2013-Curriculum]
Modern European Studies 2 (Subject element HHIK03711E) [2013-Curriculum]

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 42
  • Course Preparation
  • 367,5
  • Total
  • 409,5
Type of assessment
The Exam will be conducted in English
Criteria for exam assesment