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Free course

Crime fiction in French: le polar français

Free statement of participation on completion
Crime fiction in French: le polar français

Le polar, crime fiction, is the most popular literary form in France. In this free course, you will discover the origins and development of French crime fiction, along with its current status, before reflecting on whether it is simply mass entertainment or, rather, genuine literature of quality. You will discover some important authors and work on extracts from some well-known crime novels. You will analyse the language of le polar and explore the translation of French crime fiction into other languages. 

This OpenLearn course is an adapted extract from the Open University course L332 French Studies 3: language and culture of the French-speaking world

Most of the material in this course is in French. The language level is Advanced, equivalent to C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for languages.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • be familiar with important authors and texts in French crime fiction
  • analyse some literary techniques used by authors
  • understand differences between formal written French and informal spoken language
  • be aware of issues in translating French crime fiction into other languages
  • understand and communicate in written and spoken French.

First Published: 21/03/2024

Updated: 21/03/2024

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