To qualify for the doctorate, a student must satisfactorily complete graduate studies totaling at least 72 points (at least 32 points in residence at New York University), pass an oral and written qualifying examination and a dissertation proposal examination, and then successfully defend a dissertation. The degree of master of arts in French literature is prerequisite to the doctor of philosophy. All doctoral candidates in French should complete at least one course (including M.A. work) in each of seven areas of French and Francophone literature and one course in literary theory. All students are required to take the Proseminar, FREN-GA 1101 and the two-credit seminar in Teaching French as a Foreign Language, FREN-GA 1012. In consultation with the director of graduate studies, doctoral students may enroll in a limited number of courses outside the department in areas related to their interests, or they may choose a field of study of up to five courses in another discipline: linguistics, art history, cinema studies, performance studies, or comparative literature.
Knowledge of a second foreign language is required by the French department for the doctorate and must be demonstrated before completion of 60 points by any of the methods described in the Degree Requirements section of this bulletin or by passing with a grade of B or better a graduate course taught in that language. To have approved a language other than German, Italian, Spanish, or Latin as the second foreign language a student must meet with the Director of Graduate Studies. Decision is taken on the basis of the need of that language for the student’s work.
An examination composed of a two-hour oral portion and a take-home written portion is taken on completion of the required course work. This examination is structured as a series of inquiries (major authors, genres, and special topics) selected by the candidate, in consultation with the faculty. As soon as possible, but no later than two semesters after the successful completion of the Ph.D. qualifying examination, the student must submit a dissertation prospectus on which he or she will be orally examined for one hour. When the student has completed at least one year in residence and all course and language requirements, and passed the Ph.D. qualifying examination and the dissertation proposal examination, the student is formally admitted to candidacy for the doctorate, and a dissertation committee of five members is named. When the dissertation is completed and approved by the adviser and readers, an oral examination is held at which the candidate presents and defends research results to a faculty committee of five.
Concentration in Medieval and Renaissance Studies: The concentration in Medieval and Renaissance Studies is interdisciplinary in nature and creates a framework and community for diverse approaches to the study of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. It complements doctoral students’ work in their home departments with interdisciplinary study of the broad range of culture in the medieval and early modern periods, as well as of the theories and methods that attend them. The concentration is designed to train specialists who are firmly based in a traditional discipline but who can work across disciplinary boundaries, making use of varied theoretical approaches and methodological practices. The concentration consists of twenty credits distributed under the following courses: Proseminar in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, MEDI-GA 1100, Late Latin and Early Vernaculars, MEDI-GA 2100 or other approved course, and Medieval and Renaissance Studies Workshop, MEDI-GA 2000, 2 points per semester taken twice in an academic year. Students must also take one approved course in the area of Medieval and Renaissance Media: Visual and Material Cultures, and one approved course in a medieval or early modern topic. At least one course, not counting either the Proseminar or Workshop, must be taken outside a student’s home department. In addition, students pursuing the concentration will present a paper at least once either in the Workshop or in a conference offered by the Medieval and Renaissance Center.