Skip to Top Navigation Skip to Utility Navigation Skip to Search Skip to Left Navigation Skip to Content

Modern Languages Course Offerings

A listing of offered courses follows with prerequisites.  Please note that some courses do have additional fees associated with them.  The credit value of each course is represented by the number in brackets.


General Courses


ML 240/ENG 240 Survey of European Literature I [3]

Reading and discussion of selected authors of Continental Europe to the Renaissance.

ML 241/ENG 241 Survey of European Literature II [3]

Reading and discussion of selected authors of Continental Europe from the Renaissance to modern times.

ML 251/CIN 250 World Cinema [3]

An introductory survey of international cinema, selecting classic films of the major national cinemas (France, Italy, Germany, Sweden, Russia, Japan) along with important works from other cinemas (Yugoslavia, India, Brazil, Senegal). Weekly screenings. Prerequisite: CIN/CMM 150. Film fee.

ML 315/ENG 315/JS 315 Yiddish Literature in Translation I [3]

An introduction to literature written in Yiddish before 1900, concentrating on the three fathers of Yiddish literature, Mendele Mocher Seforim, Y. L. Peretz, and Sholem Aleichem. Included is the 17th-century journal of Gluckel of Hameln, as well as works of the occult. Prerequisite: Any 200-level literature course or permission of instructor.

ML 316/ENG 316/JS 316 Yiddish Literature in Translation II [3]

This course will continue the study of literary forms established by Seforim, Aleichem, and Peretz (The Realistic, The Ironic, The Parodic, etc.), as they appear in the world of such writers as Pinski, Spector, Asch, Reisen, Weissenber, Schneour, Shapiro, Kulback, I. J. Singer, Opatoshu, Bergelson, Glatstein, Grade, and on what are called Yenne Velt stories of Jewish fantasy and the occult. Proverbs, folk tales, songs, poems, will introduce each meeting. Prerequisite: Any 200-level literature course or permission of instructor.

324W/ENG 324W/JS 324W/REL 214W Modern European-Jewish Literature [3]

This class explores the relationship between the Jewish Enlightenment (Haskalah) and the development of modern Hebrew and Yiddish literature. The readings and class discussions will examine shifting conceptions of Jewish identity; contested notions of Diaspora, Exile, and Home; the relationship between Jewish politics and art; and the tension between the particularity of the national experience and the universality of the Jew. Readings by masters of 19th and 20th century European Jewish fiction will include: S.Y. Abramovitch (Mendele Mocher Seforim), known as the “grandfather” of Yiddish literature; Sholem Aleichem’s humorous tales of Eastern Europe; the folk stories of Y.L. Peretz; Kafka’s modernist parables; Isaac Babel’s passionate narratives of the Russian revolution; I.B. Singer’s tales of demons and sinners; and other. This course fulfills the writing intensive guideline and literature requirements for the Judaic Studies major.

ML 347/ENG 347 Modern European Literature: 1920 to the Present [3]

A comparative study of such modern European writers as Borges, Martin Gaite, Duras, Grass, Camus, Sartre, Mann, and Beckett. Prerequisite: Any 200-level literature course or permission of instructor.

351/CIN 312 National Cinemas [3]

Thorough survey of one or more of the major national cinemas (American, British, French, German, Italian, Japanese). Specific national cinema varies by the semester, thus the course may be repeated for credit. Prerequisites: CIN/CMM 150 and foreign-language literature course, or permission of instructor.

ML 390, 391 Special Topics in Modern Languages and Cultures [1–3, 1–3]

Content of courses will vary.

ML 461/ENG 461 Theories of Literary Criticism [3]

Study of major critical theories and techniques of literary criticism. Readings of significant modern literary critics and practical application of their methods. Prerequisites: ENG 140 and foreign-language literature course, or permission of instructor.

ML 470 Integrative Capstone I: Literature and Critical Theories [4]

There are two capstone courses required of all students majoring in modern languages and cultures. The capstone sequence (470-471) presumes advanced competence based on previous experience in the study of major writers, ideas, and cultural periods within the student’s target literature and culture program. The first capstone (ML 470) treats representative writers, genres, and cultural periods, and trains students to make comparisons and connections between different writers, periods, theories, and ideas in the several international literatures and cultures taught in the ML department. The content varies each semester dependent on majors in the capstone. The capstone course is open to students with junior-level standing or by permission of instructor.

ML 471 Integrative Capstone II: Constructions of Culture [4]

This is the second and final course in a required capstone sequence. The capstone sequence (ML 470–471) presumes advanced competence based on previous experience in the study of major writers, ideas, and cultural periods within the student’s target literature and culture program. This course will explore and situate theory and methods from cultural studies, an approach in which literary and artistic texts, including film, television, and video, are treated as conveyors of the working myths of a culture, not representations of essences or natures. Cultural studies treats texts as living structures that tend to become frozen within the limits of a historical-cultural scene and to intermingle with the scene to such an extent that imagining something else becomes difficult. In this way, particular categories of class, race, gender, sexualities, and the like acquire the status of norms (become normalized). The course focuses on how messages are constructed, how readers deconstruct them, and on distinct approaches to reading the various texts of a given culture. Prerequisite: Junior standing or permission of instructor. Normally taken in the senior year.

ML 480, 481 Special Topics in Modern Languages and Cultures [3, 3]

Independent study in one or more modern language(s) or culture(s) under faculty supervision. May be elected in lieu of a course not being taught when needed, or, when a field of interest to the student is not covered in the curriculum. Open to undergraduates, and to graduates by special arrangement. May be given as a seminar with sufficient student demand. Prerequisite: Permission of department chair.

ML 510 Graduate Studies in Modern Languages and Cultures [3]

Intensive study of major figures, works, and topics that will be offered in the target language or in English as the need arises for graduate credit. Prerequisite: Permission of department chair.

ML 511 Language and Society [3]

Language is a major factor in cultural, social, and political organization. While students often study languages, and while they may pay some attention to language issues in courses in the humanities and social sciences, it is seldom that they examine language in all of its major social manifestations. That is the goal of the course. It should assist students in understanding the role of language as a human institution and will deepen their language learning as well as their sensitivity to, and awareness of, language issues. The course will focus on how people define themselves through language, how languages compete with one another, and on the forms language takes. It will consider the role of language in education, including issues of literacy, immigration, and efforts to promote language unity in the United States.

ML 564 Language Teaching Methodology [3]

Study of modern techniques and technologies for the teaching of foreign languages. Prerequisite: Senior or graduate standing, or permission of instructor.

Arabic Courses


ARA 110 Elementary Arabic I [3]

This course introduces Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) language and cultures of the Arabic-speaking world. Course includes the five basic skills of listening, speaking, reading, writing, and cultural knowledge.

ARA 111 Arabic II [3]

This course continues the study of Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) language and cultures of the Arabic-speaking world. Course includes the five basic skills of listening, speaking, reading, writing, and cultural knowledge. Prerequisites: ARA 110.

French Courses


110-111 Elementary French I and II* [3-3]

Introduction to spoken and written French based on the Capretz “French in Action” method. Intensive training in speaking and understanding through observation of native French on videocassette, oral practice with audiocassette, and active class participation. No prerequisite.

FR 116 Intensive Elementary French [6]

Intensive introduction to French. Intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of basic structural patterns. This course is the accelerated equivalent of the FR 110-111 sequence.

FR 210-211 Intermediate French I and II [4-4]

Courses focus on conversation and composition, undertaking a systematic review of French grammar in a contextual fashion. These courses develop students’ knowledge of cognates and grammatical structures and build vocabulary in order to improve overall proficiency in French. Emphasis is on development of reading and composition strategies through contextual study, using various readings, of the structural patterns of the French language. Appreciation of French culture is developed using a variety of materials drawn from literary texts, current news articles, films, and current news clips. Prerequisite: FR 111 or 116, or equivalent.

FR 300 Literature, Conversation, and Composition [4]

This is a post intermediate course of French composition and conversation. It is designed for students with two or more years of college-level French. As a third-level modern language course, it provides a link between basic language study and more advanced work in French literature and culture. It introduces students to literary analysis while furthering their knowledge of complex grammatical structures and linguistic expression. Thus, FR 300 serves as an introduction to French literature and civilization and is designed to stimulate interest in French history and everyday life. Classes are taught in French. Prerequisite: FR 211 or equivalent.

FR 342, 343 Studies in French Culture [3, 3]

An intensive study of French and Francophone figures, works, and cultural movements. Content varies from semester to semester. Courses are taught in French. Prerequisite:FR 211 or permission of instructor.

484, 485, 486, 487 Independent Study in French [variable credit, 1–3 per semester]

Individual work in French language, literature, or culture with faculty supervision. By special arrangement only. Open to graduates as well as undergraduates. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor and signature of department chairman on the basis of a written prospectus submitted in advance.

*A student who has taken two years of a language in secondary school is normally assigned to the intermediate level of that language.

German Courses


GER 110-111 Elementary German I and II [3-3]

Introduction to German. Intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of basic structural patterns.

GER 116 Intensive Elementary German [6]

Intensive introduction to German. Intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of basic structural patterns. This course is the accelerated equivalent of the GER 110-111 sequence.

Italian Courses


110-111 Elementary Italian I and II* [3-3]

Introduction to Italian. Intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of basic structural patterns.

ITA 116 Intensive Elementary Italian [6]

Intensive introduction to Italian. Intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of basic structural patterns. This course is the accelerated equivalent of the ITA 110-111 sequence.

ITA 210-211 Intermediate Italian I and II [4-4]

Courses focus on the development of both oral and written communication in the target language. Grammar will be presented through cultural readings on contemporary life in Italy (political and social issues, environmental problems, the media, the educational system, sports, and entertainment) as well as 20th-century short literary texts. Prerequisite: ITA 111 or 116, or equivalent.

ITA 300 Literature, Conversation, and Composition [4]

This is a course of post intermediate Italian composition and conversation, designed for students with two or more years of college-level Italian. As a third-level modern-language course, it provides a link between basic language study and more advanced work in Italian literature and culture. It introduces students to literary analysis while furthering their knowledge of complex grammatical structures and linguistic expression. Thus, it serves as an introduction to Italian literature and civilization and is designed to stimulate interest in Italian history and everyday life. Classes are taught in Italian. Prerequisite: ITA 211 or equivalent.

ITA 430 Dante’s Divina Commedia [3]

Reading and study of Dante’s masterpiece, with special emphasis on elements of narrative structure and the nature of Dante’s allegory. All reading, papers, and exams in Italian; class lectures in English. Prerequisite:Permission of instructor. Prerequisite:Any 200-level literature course or permission of instructor.

484, 485, 486, 487 Independent Study in Italian [variable credit, 1–3 per semester]

Individual work in Italian language, literature, or culture with faculty supervision. By special arrangement only. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor and signature of department chairman on the basis of a written prospectus submitted in advance.

*A student who has taken two years of a language in secondary school is normally assigned to the intermediate level of that language.

Spanish Courses


SPA 110-111 Elementary Spanish I and II* [3-3]

Development of basic language skills, reading, writing, and speaking. The course also covers cultural material of the country (Spain/ Latin America/U.S. Latino) studied.

SPA 116 Intensive Elementary Spanish [6]

Intensive introduction to Spanish. Intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of basic structural patterns. This course is the accelerated equivalent of the SPA 110-111 sequence.

SPA 210-211 Intermediate Spanish I and II [3-3]

An intensive review and continued development of the four skills, with emphasis on reading literary and cultural texts. Prerequisite: SPA 110-111 or equivalent.

SPA 216 Intensive Intermediate Spanish [6]

Continues intensive training in understanding, speaking, reading, writing, and the use of more advanced structural patterns. This course is the accelerated equivalent of the SPA 210-211 sequence. Prerequisites: Completion of SPA 116 or its equivalent, and permission of instructor.

SPA 342, 343 Studies in Spanish Culture [3, 3]

An intensive study of major figures, works, and cultural movements. Content varies from semester to semester. Courses are taught in Spanish. Prerequisite: SPA 211, its equivalent, or permission of instructor.

SPA 484, 485, 486, 487 Independent Study [variable credit, 1–3 per semester]

Individual work in the field of Hispanic studies, under faculty supervision. By special arrangement only. Open to graduates as well as undergraduates. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor and signature of department chairman, on the basis of a written prospectus submitted in advance.

*A student who has taken two years of a language in secondary school is normally assigned to the intermediate level of that language.