Humanities: German and German Studies, 2012-2013
The Department of German draws upon the expertise of the German faculty at both Bryn Mawr and Haverford to offer a broadly conceived German studies program, incorporating a variety of courses and major options. The purpose of the major in German is to lay the foundation for a critical understanding of German culture in its contemporary international context and its larger political, social and intellectual history. To this end, we encourage a thorough and comparative study of the German language and culture through its linguistic and literary history, systems of thought, institutions, political configurations, arts and sciences. The German program aims, by means of various methodological approaches to the study of another language, to foster critical thinking, expository writing skills, understanding of the diversity of culture(s) and the ability to respond creatively to the challenges cultural differebce posed in an increasingly multicultural world. Course offerings serve both students with particular interests in German literature, literary theory and criticism as well as those interested in studying German and German-speaking cultures from the perspective of communication arts, film, history, history of ideas, history of art and architecture, history of religion, institutions, linguistics, mass media, philosophy, politics, urban anthropology and folklore.
A thorough knowledge of German is a common goal for both major concentrations. The objective of our language instruction is to teach students communicative skills that enable them to function effectively in authentic conditions of language use and to speak and write in idiomatic German. A major component of all German courses is the examination of issues that underline the cosmopolitanism as well as the specificity and complexity of contemporary German culture. We encourage German majors to take courses in interdisciplinary areas, such as comparative literature, history, political science, philosophy, music, and feminist and gender studies, where they read works of criticism in these areas in the original German.
At Haverford College
Associate Professor Ulrich Schönherr, Co-Chair
Assistant Professor Imke Brust
At Bryn Mawr College
Fairbank Professor in the Humanities and Professor of German and Comparative Literature Azade Seyhan
Professor Imke Meyer, Co-Chair
Visiting Assistant Professor Heidi Schlipphacke
Lecturer David Kenosian
At Haverford College
Associate Professor of Philosophy Jerry Miller
John C. Whitehead 1943 Professor of Music Richard Freedman
At Bryn Mawr College
Rufus M. Jones Professor of Philosophy Robert J. Dostal
Associate Professor of Political Science Carol J. Hager
Associate Professor of History of Art Christiane Hertel
The German major consists of 10 units. All courses at the 200 or 300 level count toward the major, in either a literature concentration or a German studies concentration.
A literature concentration normally follows the sequence 201 and/or 202; 205 or 206; or 214, 215; plus additional courses to complete the ten units, two of them at the 300 level; and finally one semester of Senior Conference.
A German studies major normally includes 223 and/or 224; one 200 and one 300 level course in German literature; three courses (at least one should be a 300 level course) in subjects central to aspects of German culture, history or politics; and one semester of German 321 (Advanced Topics in German Cultural Studies).
Within each concentration, students need to select courses so as to achieve a reasonable breadth, but also a degree of disciplinary coherence. Within departmental offerings, GERM 201 and 202 (Advanced Training) strongly emphasize the development of conversational, writing and interpretive skills.
A minor in German and German studies consists of six units of work. To earn a minor, students are normally required to take GERM 201 or 202; and four additional units covering a reasonable range of study topics, of which at least one unit is at the 300 level. The one remaining upper-level course may be taken either within the German program, or (with the approval of the department) from the recommended electives for German studies majors.
We encourage students majoring in German to spend time in German-speaking countries in the course of their undergraduate studies. Various possibilities are available: summer work programs, DAAD (German Academic Exchange) scholarships for summer courses at German universities and selected junior year abroad programs (in Berlin, Freiburg, Vienna). We also encourage students to take advantage of the many opportunities on both campuses for immersion programs in German language and culture: residence in Haffner Hall foreign language apartments at Bryn Mawr, the German Film Series, the German Lecture Series, the weekly Stammtisch and more informal conversational groups attended by faculty members.
Any student whose grade point average in the major at the end of the senior year is 3.8 or above qualifies (by grade point average alone) for Departmental Honors. Students whose major grade point average at the end of the senior year is 3.6 or better (but not 3.8) are eligible to be discussed as candidates for Honors. For Honors to be awarded to a student in this range of eligibility, at least one faculty member with whom he/she has done coursework must sponsor the student, and at least one other faculty member must read some of the student’s advanced work and agree on the excellence of the work. If there is a sharp difference of opinion, additional readers serve as needed.
001 Elementary German HU
This course meets five hours a week with the individual class instructor and one hour with student drill instructors. It places strong emphasis on communicative competence both in spoken and written German in a larger cultural context. This is a year-long course; both semesters (001 and 002) are required for credit.
002 Elementary German HU
101 Intermediate German HU
This course meets three hours a week with the individual class instructor and one hour with student drill instructors. It includes a thorough review of grammar, exercises in composition and conversation, and enforcement of correct grammatical patterns and idiomatic use of language. Students study selected literary and cultural texts and films from German-speaking countries. This course is two semesters. It does not count toward the major.
102 Intermediate German HU
This course meets three hours a week with the individual class instructor and one hour with student drill instructor. It includes a thorough review of grammar, exercises in composition and conversation, and enforcement of correct grammatical patterns and idiomatic use of language. Students study selected literary and cultural texts and films from German-speaking countries. This course is two semesters.
201 Advanced Training: Language, Text, and Context HU
This course is intended for students who wish to refine their speaking, writing and reading skills beyond the intermediate level. Designed as a comprehensive introduction to modern German culture, we discuss a variety of literary, political, historical and philosophical texts, including feature films and video materials. Weekly grammar reviews complement these activities. Prerequisite: GERM 102.
202 Advanced Training: Introduction to German Studies HU
Interdisciplinary and historical approaches to the study of German language and culture. Selected texts for study will be drawn from autobiography, anthropology, Märchen, satire, philosophical essays and fables, art and film criticism, discourses of gender, travel writing, cultural productions of minority groups and scientific and journalistic writings. Prerequisite: GERM 102.
212 Revolution and German Culture (1789-1989) HU
Focusing on exemplary philosophical, political and literary texts (including movies), the course closely examines the multifaceted German reception of the revolutions of 1789, 1848 and 1918, as well as the student rebellion of 1968. In addition, we analyze the various narrative strategies that philosophers of history, politicians and writers employ to conceptualize and represent the historical events.
214 Survey of Literature in German HU
U. Schönherr/I. Brust
This is a study of the major periods of German literature within a cultural and historical context, including representative texts for each period.
223 Working Through the Holocaust Past in German Drama & Film HU (Cross-listed in Comparative Literature)
224 Books & Media for Children: From Enlightenment to Cyberspace HU
258 Re-imagining the City: Berlin and Vienna in Literature and Film HU (Cross-listed in Comparative Literature)
An examination of the imagination and re-imagination of two important European capitals, Berlin and Vienna, in 20th century literature and film, especially in the aftermath of the world wars. We pay special attention to the geographical, cultural, religious and political differences between the two cities, and we ask to what extent such differences produced different forms of artistic reimaginings, different artistic responses to the destruction and transformation brought about by war. Open to students with sophomore standing.
262 European Film HU (Cross-listed in Comparative Literature)
263 Visualizing Europe HU (Cross-listed in Political Science and Gender and Sexuality Studies)
305 Modern German Drama HU
319 Intermedial Transformations: Musico-Acoustic Imaginations in Literature and Film HU (Cross-listed in Comparative Literature and Music and Gender and Sexuality Studies)
This course explores the rich and diverse representation of music in all its socio-aesthetic complexity, from antiquity to the present. We give special focus to the intermedial strategies of translating non-verbal media (music, sound) into language. The class is taught in English with an extra session in German. Prerequisite: One 200-level course in the humanities.
320 Sex, Crime, Madness: The Birth of Modernism and Aesthetics of Transgression HU
321 Literature & Media: From Print Culture to Web 2.0 HU (Cross-listed in Comparative Literature)
359 Music - Text - Performance HU (Cross-listed in Comparative Literature and Gender and Sexuality Studies)
This course explores the rich and diverse representations of music in all its socio-aesthetic complexity, from antiquity to the present. The thematic scope of our investigations ranges from mythological, philosophical, theological and semiotic questions, through issues of gender, race and politics, to theories of (operatic) performance. The class is taught in English with an extra session in German. Prerequisite: One 200-level course in the Humanities.
399 Senior Conference HU
I. Brust/U. Schönherr
RECOMMENDED ELECTIVES AT HAVERFORD
COML 200 Intro to Comparative Literature
MUSC 250b Words and Music World
PHIL 243 Twentieth-Century Philosophy
COURSES AT BRYN MAWR COLLEGE
COML 211 The Holocaust and Its Aftermath
HIST 319 Hitler, National Socialism, and German Society
HART 348 Topics in German Art
POLS 308 Germany and Its Neighbors