* Course descriptions and required texts are subject to change.

Courses

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

GRMN 6601 - Adv Language Practice      

Advanced Language Practice for Academic Work

This course will focus on various forms of German academic writing, with an emphasis on the special academic lexicon, stylistics, and the “mechanics” of writing for a German academic audience. In a scaffolded approach, students will learn how to summarize, analyze, and discuss academic topics, and thorough training of proper citation techniques and diversified register as well as insights into German academic conventions and usages will prepare students for turning research into high-quality written work and oral presentations.

A course reader will be made available.* Language & Stylistics

Summer 2014 Language Schools, Summer 2015 Language Schools, Summer 2016 Language Schools, Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6606 - Intro to German Linguistics      

German, just like every language, needs to be understood as a historical and social system but also as a biological and cognitive human ability. In this course, we will take a close look at this system and ability and how we can describe and explain them. The following core areas of German linguistics shall be the focus of the first part of our work:
1) Phonetics: What sounds and tones constitute (the German) language?
2) Phonology: How does the human brain categorize sounds and gestures to identify units (phonemes) that carry meaning?
3) Morphology/ lexicon: How do phonemes come together to become units (morphemes) that help us differentiate meaning? How do we form words?
4) Syntax: How do words come together to form (German) sentences?
5) Semantics/ Pragmatics: How do we recognize, respectively construct meaning in sentences, texts and contexts?
The second part of the course will then use findings from our systematic decoding of the German language to address specific questions of language acquisition, neuro-linguistics as well as the history of the German language.

Required texts:

Heinz Vater, Einführung in die Sprachwissenschaft. UTB Verlag. W. Fink. 4. Auflage, unv. Nachdruck (1. Nov. 2002) Stuttgart
ISBN- 10: 3-8252-1799-X
ISBN-13: 978-3825217990

Karl-Heinz Göttert, Deutsch. Biographie einer Sprache. List-Taschenbuch.1. Aufl. (11.März 2011). Berlin
ISBN-10: 3548610242
ISBN -13: 978-3548610245 Language & Stylistics

Summer 2016 Language Schools

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GRMN 6610 - Intro Literary Analysis      

An Introduction to Literary Analysis (“Schreibprozesse”)

This course combines creative writing in German with literary theory and will help develop aesthetic sensibilities by looking at sample literary texts and the methods they use to create their effects. What do metaphors, allegories, poems, stories, or dramatic scenes of others ‘feel’ like if they are read or if they are written by oneself? What makes images into a poem, or a text into a film? The study of the (literary) metaphor, the tonal quality of poetic speech, and the processes involved in transposing one medium into another will help students explore their own literary-creative potential.

A course reader will be made available.* Literature

Summer 2014 Language Schools, Summer 2015 Language Schools, Summer 2016 Language Schools, Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6612 - German Cultural History      

What is Germany? Myth, Memory, Culture

In 2014, the British Museum opened their fascinating exhibition Germany. Memories of a Nation, a show that incited the visitor’s active participation by distilling Germany’s unique and diverse history in only one hundred objects on display, carefully chosen by curator Neil MacGregor. At first sight only vaguely interconnected, these 100 objects invoked the fragmented nature of Germany as a country—neither geographically nor historically, we can even speak of a German nation or history prior to 1871. Instead, a multitude of smaller German states with constantly shifting borders but distinct regional identities suggested over the centuries that “German” was a complex cultural instead of a geopolitical concept. This course traces this complex cultural history and identity from the Reformation to our days. Questions guiding our discussions will include: What is German? What factors define a national identity and which ones created modern German identity? What is the relationship between this historically complex identity and today’s Germany as a nation-state? A study of myths and legends, master narratives, stereotypes and images from and about Germany will help provide answers to these and other questions.

Required texts:
- Neil MacGregor, Deutschland. Erinnerungen einer Nation. München: C.H. Beck 2015
ISBN 978-3-406-67920-9.
- Autorenteam. Meilensteine deutscher Geschichte. Von der Antike bis heute. Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung. ISBN 978-3-8389-0642-3 Area Studies

Summer 2016 Language Schools

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GRMN 6613 - Literary Berlin in Golden 20s      

Between Glamour and Gutter - Literary Berlin in the Golden Twenties

Within only a few years Berlin advanced to the “literary capital” of Germany during the Weimar Republic (1918-1933). Thereby the modern city was not only a production place for writers of a great variety of genres. Rather novelists and poets, dramatists and feuilletonists focused on municipal subjects in their works. In the course we’re going to analyse novels like “Berlin Alexanderplatz” from Alfred Döblin, “Das kunstseidene Mädchen” from Irmgard Keun and “Fabian” from Erich Kästner as well as of poems from Bertolt Brecht, Gottfried Benn or Georg Trakl and essayistic texts like Franz Hessels “Spazieren in Berlin” or Bernard von Brentanos “Wo in Europa liegt Berlin?” We will have to question, how the authors react to the rapidly changing living conditions in the million-strong metropolis and in which way the literary and essayistic texts mirror the multifaceted social-cultural realities of the so called Golden Twenties – a time, in which enormous social ills prevailed just below a shimmering surface and life was oscillating between glamour and gutter.

Required texts: Döblin: Berlin Alexanderplatz (Fischer); Hessel: Spazieren in Berlin (Berlin Verlag Taschenbuch (2012)); Kästner: Fabian (dtv); Keun: Das kunstseidene Mädchen (List). Literature

Summer 2014 Language Schools

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GRMN 6622 - German Film      

Is “life [really] too short to watch a German movie”? - Taking a tour of the history of German film, this course attempts to refute the famous saying by the renowned German-Jewish theater and film actor and director Fritz Kortner. Starting with the silent era, we will explore the vivid cinematic and cultural life in pre- and post-WW1 Germany and the ensuing period marked by an enormous exodus of talent, forced by the Nazis. After a short glance at Nazi propaganda movies and their counterpart, “inner immigration” cinematic art, the course will look at post-war cinema, the advent of TV-culture, the “New German Cinema” from the sixties onwards, and we will discuss the strange fact that, in spite of Germany’s image as being humor-averse, it is mostly comedies that have been financially successful at the box office and beyond. Theoretical approaches to reading film as text and art will deepen our inquiry and help situate German film in the context of an international film culture/ market.

Required texts:
- Walter Benjamin, Das Kunstwerk im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit. Frankfurt a.M: Suhrkamp, ISBN 3-518-06852-0
- Wolfgang Jacobsen, Anton Kaes, and Hans Helmut Prinzler, Geschichte des deutschen Films. Stuttgart, Weimar: J. B. Metzler. ISBN 3-476-01952-7.
- Hans Helmut Prinzler, Chronik des deutschen Films. J.B. Metzler Stuttgart – Weimar. ISBN 3-476-01290-5 Area Studies

Summer 2016 Language Schools

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GRMN 6624 - Emigration&Immigration in film      

"Emigration and Immigration in German Film"*

The history of German film is deeply steeped in the history of emigration. Rising to international fame during the Weimar Republic years, German filmmakers were amongst the most innovative and creative artists of the moving image world-wide. Yet, as the National Socialists seized power, many had to flee, fearing persecution due to their Jewish background, their beliefs, or their sexual orientation. They found a new home in Hollywood where their influence can be seen in genres like the “Film Noir”, while their colleagues in Germany either went into inner emigration or consented to collaborate with the regime. This course will follow the fate of film makers and their works to assess the status of the German “immigrant movie” before, during, and after the Third Reich. Eventually we will juxtapose these works with more recent German movies, both serious and comedic, written, produced, and directed by second-generation immigrants.

Required texts: A course reader will be made available electronically. Civ Cul & Soc

Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6626 - Hitler's Germany      

Hitler’s Germany: The Rise of a Dictatorship and Everyday Life in Nazi Germany

Democracy is a fragile system of government. A case in point: the first German democracy, the Weimar Republic that proved too vulnerable to survive and allowed extremists to destroy the modern pluralistic society. This course will expose both the preconditions and the conditions that led to Hitler’s rise to power. Abusing his authority, Hitler successfully established the so-called Gleichschaltungsgesetze that effectively helped to establish his dictatorship and subsequently supported his reign of terror and unbridled authoritarianism. Using personal narratives as its main texts, this course provides insights into individual biographies of Nazi victims and juxtaposes these stories with the biographies of enthusiastic Hitler-supporters. Using the form of the personal testimony, students will learn how oral history helps to understand a totalitarian regime and its direct impact on the individual.

Required texts: A course reader will be made available electronically. Civ Cul & Soc

Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6628 - German Artists after 1960      

Here and Now? 20 Post-War Positions in Germany after 1960

After World War II, after dictatorship and deep provincialism, an internationalization of the German art scene began. Art in the West developed close ties to France and the USA, whereas in the East first of all the doctrine of socialist realism seems to have prevailed. Apart from international attention German Art also obtained considerable economic success.
Artists such as Richter or Kiefer appear in all major international collections. On the other hand there are now and then constant specifically German topics: world war II, guilt, the Holocaust, German myths – German art seems to present a dance on a tightrope between cosmopolitanism and questions of identity.
The course will follow the chronology of events, presenting the following 20 individual artists, but we also will try to discuss the question whether there could or should be such a thing as typically German or National Art at all.
Georg Baselitz
Bernd und Hilla Becher
Joseph Beuys
Carl Otto Götz
Andreas Gursky
Johannes Grützke
Hans Haacke
Rebecca Horn
Jörg Immendorf
Anselm Kiefer
Kippenberger
Markus Lüpertz
Jonathan Meese
Sigmar Polke
Neo Rauch
Gerhard Richter
Salome
Thomas Schütte
Werner Tübke
Wolf Vostell

Required text: Thomas: Kunst in Deutschland seit 1945 (Dumont Verlag, Köln 2004). Area Studies

Summer 2014 Language Schools

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GRMN 6642 - Political Architecture Germany      

Political Architecture in Germany- an Expression of National Identity?

Architecture is one of the traditional means of political representation. But buildings do not just make an aesthetic statement: architecture plays a crucial role in communicating ideas and ideologies within politico-social transfer processes. Looking at the Reichstag Building or the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin – to name but a few –, the course will explore the ways in which architecture and its messages can play a crucial part in a nation’s (or state’s) identity formation processes.

A course reader will be made available. Area Studies

Summer 2015 Language Schools

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GRMN 6650 - The Other Germany:Hist of GDR      

The Other Germany: A History of the GDR

Right after the Second World War, Germany became a divided country. From the Soviet occupied zone to the GDR, this „first anti-fascist state on German soil“ was shaped by both hope and illusions, and by the experiences of need and oppression. When the system collapsed in 1989, the GDR and its people were confronted with enormous changes and challenges. This course will explore the GDR both in a German and international context, and special emphasis will be placed on the social and psychological mentality of its citizens and its legacy in reunified Germany.

Required texts:
Benz, Wolfgang: Deutschland 1945-1949 [=Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung: Informationen zur politischen Bildung 259/2005].
Malycha, Andreas: Geschichte der DDR [=Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung: Informationen zur politischen Bildung 312/2001].
Thema DDR. Vor dem Mauerfall. Magazin der Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung Nr.30 (2009).
Course reader Area Studies

Summer 2015 Language Schools

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GRMN 6652 - Berlin-Lit & Culture 1915-2015      

As a modern city, Berlin, with its fractured history, occupies a special place amongst German metropoles. This hold especially true for Berlin’s trials and tribulations in the 20th century. In this course, we will look at this period and study in-depth reflections and responses to the city in literature, music, and the visual arts. Topics will include: Expressionism, both in literature and the visual arts; the “Golden Twenties” with their cabaret culture and burgeoning film industry; Jewish life in Berlin; Berlin under Nazism; the building and fall of the Berlin Wall and their reflection in literature; German reunification and its cultural repercussions; the “Neue Mitte” and the cultural and literary profile of Berlin today; and changing depictions of the city in contemporary texts. Authors will include Jakob van Hoddis, Gottfried Benn, Bertolt Brecht, Alfred Döblin, Erich Kästner, Kurt Tucholsky, Carl Zuckmayer, Lion Feuchtwanger, Sarah Kirsch, Günter Grass, Rolf Hochhuth, Tanja Dückers, Inka Parei, Hans-Ulrich Treichel, and Gerhard Falkner, and others.

A course reader will be made available.* Literature

Summer 2016 Language Schools

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GRMN 6655 - History of Religion      

Shaping Modern Germany: A Cultural History of Religions in Germany

Cuius regio, eius religio: In 2017, the Protestant world is celebrating 500 years of Martin Luther’s revolutionary act of “Reformation”, a watershed moment that has influenced the German religious map to this very day. Christianity and its various denominations—the Roman Catholic church, Protestantism (Lutheranism as well as Reformed Protestantism)—but also Judaism and other religious faiths have helped to shape a complex religious diversity, and they have enriched Germany’s cultural life. However, this religious diversity is also responsible for deep rifts and sectarianism in German society, visible in practices of inclusion and exclusion. This course offers a thorough survey of 500 years of Germany’s diverse religious history. From the days of Martin Luther to this day, religion plays an integral role in German society despite an ongoing increasing secularization of life in Germany—it can indeed be considered key in understanding German politics, culture, and society.

Required texts: A course reader will be made available electronically. Civ Cul & Soc

Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6680 - German Romanticism      

The Romantic movement, with its emphasis on emotion, imagination and a sensitivity to nature, was at its height from the late 18th century to the mid 19th century, but its legacy lives on to our day. This course will take the fairy tale as its point of departure and move toward an understanding of the totality of the Romantic epoch and its artistic and philosophical output in its historical and cultural context. The study of Romantic poetry, prose, painting, music, and forms of sociability will help understand the “Romantic mind” and its philosophical underpinnings (“Universalpoesie”, irony, mysticism etc.). Literature

Summer 2015 Language Schools

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GRMN 6681 - Seminar: Faust      

Goethes Faust: text – interpretation - reception

Goethe’s Faust is considered to be a pivotal work of German literature. For about 200 years it has remained in the public consciousness and has retained an amazing vigor and relevance, making it a foundational text in German thought and culture. Faust, a self-determined hero on an eternal quest for the perfect moment, engages productively with the world of ideas, of technology, of progress—this tragedy’s protagonist represented nothing less than an exemplary man well into the 20th century. As modern Western societies now struggle with the demands and effects of such restlessness, Faust’s fate is no longer read as a model but as a cautionary tale about man’s inability to pause and recalibrate through contemplation.

The major focus of this seminar about Faust I is a careful analysis of the text which will consider structure, style, language as well as aspects of versification and dramaturgy. Origin and sources will be discussed as well biographical and historical background and the place of the drama in Goethe’s Gesamtwerk. We will compare film versions of famous Faust productions, and explore different critical responses to Faust, which will help contextualize the play and cast light on its ongoing relevance and modernity.

Required texts: Texts will be available for purchase at the College Bookstore. Literature

Summer 2014 Language Schools, Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6683 - Postwall Poetics      

Postwall Poetics: Corpora, Communcation, Media

In this course we explore German literature from the Wendezeit to the 21st century, focusing on a number of texts that can be defined as ‘body literature’. Rather than directly addressing the fall of the Berlin Wall, these texts employ a transgressive poetics. In themes of love, desire and death they tear down the walls between physical bodies and between literary bodies, thus opening up communication between texts, individuals, and nations. Topics include: the body, anatomy, vampirism, virtual reality, intertextuality, transmediality, transnationalism.

Required texts: Tawada: Das nackte Auge (Konkursbuch Verlag); Stein: Replay (C. H. Beck); Beyer: Das Menschenfleisch (Suhrkamp); Grünbein: Schädelbasislektion (Suhrkamp); Hettche: Nox (Suhrkamp); Braun: Die deutsche Gegenwartsliteratur (UTB). Literature

Summer 2014 Language Schools

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GRMN 6685 - Weimar Germany (1919-1933)      

Weimar Germany (1919-1933): Challenges of a Young Democracy

From its very beginning, the Weimar Republic was in jeopardy as political extremist forces aimed at destabilizing the fragile republic. Yet, this precarious democracy also became the fertile breeding ground for a veritable explosion of new ideas in the arts, culture, the sciences, and society that shaped modernism in major and lasting ways. This course will retrace the conflict-ridden and fascinating developments in Germany between 1919 and 1933 and try to answer the question what led to the ultimate failure of this first German experiment with democracy.

Required texts:
Mai, Gunther: Die Weimarer Republik. München 2014. [2. Auflage].
Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (Hg.): Weimarer Republik [=Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung: Informationen zur politischen Bildung 261/2011]
Course reader Area Studies

Summer 2015 Language Schools

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GRMN 6687 - Contemporary Germany      

Welcome to Normality? - On Identity, Political Culture, and Society in Contemporary Germany

After decades of reeling from the aftermath of World War II and the country’s division in East and West, Germany has once more risen to the status of the leading nation in Europe and that of an important player on the international stage. How could this ascent happen? What preconditions, both political/ constitutional and social, have contributed to this development? And what is Germany’s new role in Europe and in an increasingly complex international context? Drawing on political and constitutional theory, historiography, social studies, and a close investigation of Germany’s representation in the media, the course will help students answer these and related questions and come to a more complex understanding of the „new Germany“ in the 21st century.

Required texts(:
Rudzio, Wolfgang 2015: Das politische System der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Wiesbaden.

*Course reader/ online materials
Area Studies

Summer 2015 Language Schools

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GRMN 6688 - Hist Migration: Modern Germany      

Melting Pot?/ A History of (Forced) Migration in Modern Germany*

This course provides insightst into Germany’s turbulent migrant history since the 19th century. Responding to problems back home and opportunities in the German lands, ethnic and religious minorities as well as ethnic Germans from the East have moved to Germany throughout the past 200+ years, but despite this, Germany has never thought of itself as an immigrant country or owning a diverse culture. This course will show to what extent migrants have challenged and shaped modern Germany, be they Ruhrpolen, refugees, expellees or Gastarbeiter, and it will provide a historical, theoretical and terminological framework to discuss and assess the current refugee crisis that has brought over one million migrants to Germany in 2015 alone.

Required texts:
- ZEIT-Verlag, Die neuen Deutschen. Vom Dreißigjährigen Krieg bis heute: 400 Jahre Einwanderung nach Deutschland. ZEIT Geschichte Nr. 4 (2015) ISBN 4-196763-905907-04
- Andreas Kossert: Kalte Heimat. Die Geschichte der deutschen Vertriebenen. München 2009, 4. Auflage. Pantheon Verlag. ISBN 978-3-570-55101-1
- Karl-Heinz Meier-Braun/ Reinhold Weber, Migration und Integration in Deutschland. Begriffe-Fakten-Kontroversen. Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung. ISBN 978-3-8389-0389-7
- Jochen Oltmer, Globale Migration. Geschichte und Gegenwart. München: C.H. Beck.
ISBN 978-3-406-64092-6 Area Studies

Summer 2016 Language Schools

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GRMN 6690 - Teaching Grmn Foreign Language      

Methods of Teaching German as a Foreign Language

This course analyses and discusses various approaches to, and principles of teaching German language, culture and authentic materials, including literary and audiovisual texts. Particular emphasis will be given to the following issues: reflective practices, learning strategies, intercultural competence, classroom interaction, multiple literacy development, meaningful application of technology, and interactive teaching and learning. The discussion will be accompanied by activities and projects that can be implemented directly in the language and culture classroom.

Required texts: All materials will be made available via the course’s course management website. Pedagogy

Summer 2015 Language Schools, Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6694 - Special Topics: Teaching GSL      

Special topics in Teaching German as a Foreign Language

This course will introduce participants to four special topics in foreign language pedagogy. An introductory week (E. Steding), focusing on current methods in and approches to teaching German as a foreign language, will set the framework for our modules with specialists in the following fields:
1) Curriculum development towards advancedness (H. Byrnes)
2) Teaching AP German (J. Strecker)
3) Teaching writing, teaching literature: an integrative approach (J. Redmann)
4) DaF in Germany
Individual topics will then be synthesized during a week of debriefing and further exploration of their place in the dynamic field that is foreign language pedagogy in the US and beyond (E. Steding).

A course reader will be made available.* Pedagogy

Summer 2016 Language Schools

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GRMN 6695 - 19-20C German Painting      

From Romanticism to Expressionism - German Painting between Depitction of Nature and Abstraction

The liberation of the artists subject from any regulating force within German expressionism has romantic origins. While the great romantic Caspar David Friedrich was oriented to the natural model in his landscape paintings, creative fantasy also played a major role in his compositions. In this respect, we can draw a bow from Friedrichs romanticism to the realism of Adolph Menzel, the Impressionism of Max Liebermann, Max Slevogt and Lovis Corinth and the unrestricted subjectivity in works of Expressionists like Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and the artists group “Die Brücke” or Wassily Kandisky and “Der blaue Reiter”. On the basis of a profound discussion of theoretical texts an integral part of the seminar will be the close analysis of composition and style of selected and representative works which show the artists balancing act between depiction of nature and abstraction in the course of the whole 19th century until the early 20th century. On behalf of this, the red thread should be carved out, which runs from german romantic painting to famous classical modern works.

Required text: Uerlings: Theorie der Romantik (Reclam). Area Studies

Summer 2014 Language Schools

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GRMN 6800 - Independent Study      

Summer 2015 Language Schools, Summer 2017 Language Schools

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GRMN 6901 - Research Paper      

Summer 2015 Language Schools, Summer 2016 Language Schools, Summer 2017 Language Schools

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The German School

Sunderland Language Center
Middlebury College
P: 802.443.5203
F: 802.443.2075

Mailing address
German School
14 Old Chapel Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT  05753

Tina Ellison, Coordinator
germanschool@middlebury.edu