In the first session on the module we shall reflect on the value of studying highly topical themes such as religion and violence through the lens of a remote yet fundamental period in French history.
We shall find our bearings in the Renaissance and study the main characteristics of French culture and society. You can prepare for this by reading up on sixteenth-century France in introductory guides such as Mack P. Holt (ed.), Renaissance and Reformation France. 1500-1648, The Short Oxford History of France (Oxford: OUP, 2005) (esp. ch. 1, 2, 5, 6) - available also as an e-book from Warwick University Library.
We shall also watch a large extract from Patrice Chéreau's film La Reine Margot to gauge our present level of knowledge and understanding of the period and our guiding themes. At the end of the module we shall return to the film for in-depth analysis and a review of its historicity.
Follow this link for materials on La Reine Margot for the seminar at the end of the module.