Reviews of Classes taught by Colette Windish of the Modern Languages and Literatures Department

Name: Lillie Dremeaux Professor: Colette Windish Course: 012L - Introduction à l'Analyse Littéraire Taken Fall 2000 Recommends? sometimes

This course, conducted entirely in French, was a good introduction to studying literature in another language. We read a variety of genres, including plays (Racine), essays (Montaigne and Rousseau), poetry (Verlaine, Baudelaire and Ronsard), short stories (Supervielle and Maupassant) and modern fiction (Hébert). Professor Windish is extremely knowledgeable about French literature and often brings interesting elements of biography and history into literary discussion. Her specialty is poetry, and the poetry unit also seemed to be the one most enjoyed by the class. Windish does have a tendency to talk too much in a class that would be best conducted by student discussion. Another aspect of her teaching style that really turned off some students was the way she laughed if you mentioned an interpretation she did not agree with and graded papers based on how valid she thought your ideas were rather than how well you argued your points. This was very intimidating for many students who had never been an entirely French class before, so dicussion in my section usually consisted of the prof plus three confident students. The course does wonders for your comprehension skills, but definitely not your speaking skills. Although it is a very good survey of literature, the professor's method of discussion is sometimes ineffective. I definitely enjoyed the readings a lot more than the actual class. I would recommend it to students who have a genuine interest in French literature but not those who just need to fulfill a requirment.

Name: Nori Heikkinen Year: 2003 Major: Music/Undecided Course: FREN 065 - La Poésie de Baudelaire à Apollinaire Taken Fall 1999 Recommends? yes

Great course!! when I took it, there were only 7 women in the class, and so we had tiny, involved discussions. The class is taught all in french, and Windish (who's a native française) loves to talk on forever, and is an interminable well of knowledge. She's great at dissecting even the most abstruse poetry. I loved the course. There were two papers and a final assigned, so not a lot of work, but then again the grade rested on those three items. There was a lot of reading--many many poems for each class period (it met T/R), and I didn't always have a chance to do all of it, because you have to read poems twice or three times to even begin to understand the language, let alone the meaning. I think this class would be good for majors or non-majors, but you should be prepared to do a lot of thinking and really enjoy French poetry. I loved it. Take anything you can by Windish!

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