College Catalogue

German Studies


Joseph T. Malloy
Edith Toegel (S)

Frank Bergmann

German studies is an interdisciplinary concentration focusing on the language, literature, culture, historical development and politics of German-speaking countries. The concentration in German studies consists of nine courses. Beginning with the class of 2013, the concentration must include GRMN 310 (or equivalent from study abroad), A 400-level German seminar, GRMN 500 (Senior Project) and six courses from the list of approved courses. No more than three courses from departments outside of German may be counted. The Senior Project must incorporate German language sources and may be written in English or German. To attain honors students must have an average of A- or better in all coursework for the concentration, including the Senior Project. The German program also offers beginning German language (110, 120), but only courses numbered 130 or above count toward the concentration. Semester- or year-long study abroad in a German-speaking country is strongly encouraged.

A German studies minor consists of five courses. Fifth-semester language proficiency (200) and one course in translation are required.

The following courses may be counted toward the concentration. With consultation of the department adviser, other courses might be considered.

German language and literature courses: 130, 140, 200, 310, 320

German literature courses in translation: 135, 175, 176, 180, 185, 186, 187

Other core courses (course specific prerequisites must be observed):
GOV 214 Politics in Western Europe
GOV 291 International Political Economy
GOV 355 The European Union in World Affairs
HIST 117 Europe since 1815
HIST 128 Europe in the Age of Two World Wars
HIST 212 Modern Germany: 1789 to the Present
HIST 218 Twentieth-Century Europe: The Age of Two World Wars
HIST 314 Nazi Germany
MUS 252 Music in Europe 1600 to 1900
PHIL 431 Seminar in the History of Philosophy: Kant’s Critical System
PHIL 463 Seminar in Metaphysics: Nietzsche

110F First-Term German.
Introduction to the German language. Exercises in aural comprehension, speaking, reading and writing reinforced by short cultural and literary texts. No previous knowedge of German required. Four hours of class, with additional drill sessions and laboratory work. Malloy.

[115S] German Immersion.
Designed for motivated students who wish to accelerate their knowledge of German. Intensive study of all aspects of beginning language acquisition. Successful completion will allow students to place into GER 130 (third term German). Students who follow the sequence through GER 140 will qualify for study abroad. Two course credits. Three 50 minute and two 75 minute classes a week.

120S Second-Term German.
Continued development of German grammar and its use in aural comprehension, speaking, reading and writing. Readings in literature and culture supplemented with video recordings. Three hours of class, with additional sessions and laboratory work. Malloy.

130F Third-Term German.
Review of grammar, syntax and conversational techniques through work in aural comprehension, speaking, reading and writing. Literary texts supplemented with realia (such as news stories German songs, videos). Three hours of class. Malloy.

140S Introduction to German Literature and Culture.
Continued development of German grammar and vocabulary with cultural and literary texts, including works by Kafka, Dürrenmatt and Brecht, and song texts by contemporary Liedermacher. Practice in oral and written work. Prerequisite, 130 or consent of instructor. Taught in German. Malloy.

[175] German Culture of the Eighteenth-Twentieth Centuries.
Combines literary representation of important periods of German culture with cinematic representation of that period. Covers the late 18th century with its intellectual problem of Faust and the rise of Prussia politically (Minna von Barnhelm), 19th-century Romanticism and its dissolution of the self in art (The Golden Pot), turn-of-the-20th-century malaise (Young Torless) to mid-20th century political and social issues (White Rose, Divided Heaven) and divided loyalties (Le Coup de Grace). Taught in English.

176F Death or Dishonor.
Major German plays of the late 18th and early 19th centuries in English translation. Plays include G. E. Lessing's Minna von Barnhelm and Emilia Galotti, Goethe's Egmont and Iphigenia at Tauris, Schiller's Intrigue and Love and Maria Stuart, and Kleist's Prince Friedrich von Homburg and Penthesilea. Schiller's theory of the drama in the Aesthetics and Naïve and Sentimental poetry. Taught in English. Malloy.

[180] Unreal Stories.
A survey of German ballads, singspiele and narrative texts including representative works from the medieval age, the 18th and 19th centuries, and the modern age. Texts include "The Song of the Nibelungen" (considered both as a prose work and in its Wagnerian incarnation), fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm, Schubert's settings of Goethe's ballads and Kafka's "Metamorphosis." Works read not only as literary documents but as indices of the cultural, sociological and political development of German-speaking lands. Taught in English.

[185] The Faust Legend.
Study of the Faust legend and how it has been adapted over the centuries. Topics include the origins of Faust in the 15th century in its factual (Paracelsus and Johann Faust) and spiritual (alchemy and astronomy) dimensions; the Faustbook of 1587; Marlowe's adaptation of the Faust story (The Tragical History of Dr. Faustus); Goethe's Faust (The First Part of the Tragedy); operas by Gounod (Faust) and Boïto (Mefistofele); the film Mephisto by H. Mann/Szabò; and T. Mann's Doctor Faustus. Taught in English.

[186] The German Romantic Age.
On the heels of the German neo-classical age, Romantic authors sought freedom from constraints imposed by mere rational thought. Experimenting with form and content, they pushed the boundaries of the acceptable to the breaking point. Readings of their works, in English, include short stories by Tieck, Brentano, E.T.A. Hoffman, Goethe, de la Motte-Fouque; novels by Novalis, Eichendorff and Bettina von Arnim; and the theory of the romantic age as developed by A. W. Schlegel and others. Taught in English.

[187] Goethe and Beyond.
Study of the Age of Goethe in the 18th and 19th centuries and how neo-classical thought has influenced thinking since then. Works include Goethe's novels Werther and Wilhelm Meister, plays by Goethe (Berlichingen, Egmont and Torquato Tasso), Schiller's political tragedies (Mary Stuart, Don Carlos, the Wallenstein trilogy) and will include discussion of later adaptations of these works as operas by Donizetti and Verdi. Taught in English.

200F Topics in Advanced Reading and Writing.
Close reading of shorter texts, advanced grammar review and extensive writing exercises. Texts focus on contemporary Germany. Designed for students who have had two years of German or equivalent. Taught in German. (Writing-intensive.) Prerequisite, 140 or consent of instructor. Maximum enrollment, 20. Malloy.

[250] Goethe and T Mann.
Investigates the link between the writings of Johann Wolfgang Goethe (1749-1832) and Thomas Mann (1875-1955), two major German authors. Mann considered himself the in­heritor of Goethe's perspective and strove to emulate his understanding of Goethe. Reading major works of Goethe, such as Götz von Berlichingen, Wilhelm Meister's "Apprenticeship," and Wilhelm Meister's "Journeyman Years," we shall compare them to Thomas Mann's (1875-1955) works, in particular "The Magic Mountain," "Doktor Faustus" and numerous shorter works, for their aesthetic, political and social influences on Ger­many. Prerequisite, any 100-level literature course. Taught in English.

310S From Goethe to Grass: Survey of German Literature.
Study of major writers and literary movements from the 18th century to today, including authors from Germany, Austria and the former GDR. Works will include poetry, drama and short prose. Designed as preparation for upper-level literature seminars. Taught in German. (Writing-intensive.) Prerequisite, 200 or consent of instructor. Required course for German concentrators. Maximum enrollment, 20. Toegel.

[320] Topics in German Literature.
Topic for 2010: Berlin and Vienna. Much alike and yet so different, the course focused on the rich cultural heritage of the two major German speaking centers, Berlin and Vienna. Representative works of major Austrian and German writers from the 19th to the 21st centuries examined the social and cultural developments and traced the socio-historic context in which these works are situated. Taught in German. Prerequisite, 200, 310 or consent of instructor.

[420] From Empire to Republic: Twentieth-Century German Literature.
Study and analysis of works spanning the era from 1871 to the beginning of the Second World War. Selections focus on literary and cultural changes including the Jahrhundertwende and the Weimar Republic. Authors include Fontane, Hauptmann, Trakl, Hofmannsthal, George, Schnitzler and Mann. Taught in German. Prerequisite, 310 or consent of instructor.

[440] Modern Literature of the German-Speaking Countries.
Study of post-1945 literature with focus on Austria, the emergence of two contrasting Germanies, and the Neuanschluss leading to unification. Texts by Bachmann, Bernhard, Böll, Grass, Seghers, Wolf and others. Taught in German. Prerequisite, 310 or consent of instructor.

500S Senior Project.
A senior thesis required of all concentrators in the department. Open to concentrators only. Toegel.