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Spring 2017 - Undergraduate Course Descriptions

Language Courses

Literature & Culture Courses

SAS Core Goal Courses:

Intermediate German I 01:470:131
Intermediate German II 01:470:132
Fairy Tales Then and Now 01:470:225

Advanced German II 01:470:232
Introduction to German Studies 01:470:275
Introduction to Literary and Cultural Analysis 01:470:301
Marx, Nietzsche, Freud 01:470:371

Language Courses

Elementary German 101
01:470:101:01
Doris Glowacki
MWTh3 11:30am-12:50pm, Murry Hall 112

01:470:101:02
Damian Grammatikopoulos
T6 4:30pm-5:50pm, Academic Building 3100
Th67 4:30pm-7:30pm, Academic Building 2100

01:470:101:03
Alexander Pichugin
M6 4:30pm-5:50pm, Scott Hall 101
W67 4:30pm-7:30pm, Murry Hall 115

Not open for credit to students who have had two or more years of high-school German. Such students should enroll in German 121, unless they have placed into a higher-level German course.

The first semester of Elementary German introduces students to the language and culture of German-speaking countries. By the end of the semester students will be able to: talk about their activities, including studies, recreational pursuits; express their likes and dislikes; talk about possessions; give opinions on matters of taste or style; describe their talents and those of others; express their intentions, obligations, and necessities; describe feelings; talk about things that happened in the past; talk about shopping, work, and daily life at home; describe their career plans. Students of 101 are strongly encouraged to enroll in Elementary German Lab 103.

Elementary German 102
01:470:102:01
Anthony Kosar

MWTh3 11:30am-12:50pm, Scott Hall 203

Not open for credit to students who have had two or more years of high-school German. Such students should enroll in German 121, unless they have placed into a higher-level German course.

The second semester of Elementary German expands the student’s vocabulary and knowledge of German grammar. By the end of the semester students should be able to: talk about housing and housework; describe what to do when in need of medical assistance; talk about shopping and ordering food at restaurants; talk about family and community issues in a multicultural society; talk about the past and historic events. Students of 102 are strongly encouraged to enroll in Elementary German Lab 104.

Elementary German Language Lab: German for Travel
01:470:103:01
Alexander Pichugin
W5 2:50pm-4:10pm, Academic Building 2150

Co-requisite: 01:470:101.

This course is an instructor-guided laboratory practicum based on intensive use of media. It is designed for the improvement of aural/oral skills and provides the opportunity for additional language practice. Class practice involves use of audio and video, individual and group work, and recordings of students' speech for evaluation of pronunciation and fluency. It will optimize students' performance and confidence in the German languages.

Elementary German Language Lab: German Conversation
01:470:104:01
Janine Wahrendorf

Th4 1:10pm-2:30pm, Scott Hall 201

Co-requisite: 01:470:102.

This course will introduce students to the language and culture of German-speaking countries focused on the language competencies relevant for oral communication in everyday situations. Students will learn how to speak about themselves; ask basic questions; share basic information about their families and relatives; speak about their studies; speak about objects relevant to everyday situations; speak about the weather; and express their likes and dislikes.

Intermediate German I
01:470:131:01
Manuel Clemens
TTh7 6:10pm-7:30pm, Scott Hall 220

Prerequisite: 01:470:102, 01:470:108, 01:470:121, or placement.

The first semester of Intermediate German further develops students' German language skills with an emphasis on conversation and composition based on everyday situations, aspects of culture, contemporary German short stories, and review of major grammatical points. Students will stregthen their listening, reading, and writing skills, as well as cultural competency by discussing a variety of cultural topics and themes in the German-speaking world, including personal and community life, media, travel, and art. Fulfills SAS core goal AH q.

Intermediate German II
01:470:132:01
Janine Wahrendorf

TTh7 6:10pm-7:30pm, Scott Hall 105

Prerequisite: 01:470:131, 01:470:131, or placement.

The second semester of Intermediate German further expands German language skills with an emphasis on conversation and composition. Students will strengthen their listening, reading, and writing skills, as well as cultural competency by discussing a variety of cultural topics and themes in the German-speaking world, including traditions and celebrations, science and technology, nature and the environment, economy and the job market, and history and society. Fulfills SAS core goal AH q.

Advanced German I
01:470:231:01
Anna Mayer
TTh3 11:30am-12:50pm, Scott Hall 114

Prerequisite: 01:470:132, 01:470:136, or placement.

This course is designed to further students' overall German language proficiency at an advanced level. Students read authentic texts from a variety of media and genre with a thematic focus. Students work on increasing active and passive vocabulary and perfecting sentence structure in oral and written communication. The course includes intensive work on idiomatic vocabulary, sentence structure, and patterns of expression, to enable students to discuss a variety of complex topics with increasing ease and confidence.

Advanced German II: Three German Generations: 1945, 1968, 1989
01:470:232:01
Manuel Clemens
TTh4 1:10pm-2:30pm, Scott Hall 202

In German.

At the beginning of the course we will discuss the experiences and values of the two generations, which clashed during the anti-authoritarian student movement in 1968: The parents which were still raised during the Third Reich and their children born shortly after 1945. Subsequently, the discussion will focus the children of the “68-er” that grew up during the 1970’s and 1980’s and how they related to the liberal lifestyle of their parents and how they changed or criticized them in the 1990’s. Fulfills SAS core goal WC d.

Literature and Culture Courses

Fairy Tales Then and Now
01:470:225:01
Cross-listed with Comparative Literature 01:195:246:01
Martha Helfer
Susan Doose
MW5 2:50pm-4:10pm, Academic Building 2225

In English. No prerequisites.

Fairy Tales Then and Now
01:470:225:02 (1st year section)
Martha Helfer
MW5 2:50pm-4:10pm, Academic Building 2225

In English. No prerequisites.

Fairy Tales Then and Now
01:470:225:H1 (Honors)
Martha Helfer
MW5 2:50pm-4:10pm, Academic Building 2225

In English. No prerequisites.

This course analyzes the structure, meaning, and function of fairy tales and their enduring influence on literature and popular culture. While we will concentrate on the German context, and in particular the works of the Brothers Grimm, we will also consider fairy tales drawn from a number of different national traditions and historical periods, including the American present. Various strategies for interpretng fairy tales will be examined, including methodologies derived from structuralism, folklore studies, gender studies, and psychoanalysis. We will explore pedagogical and political uses and abuses of fairy tales. We will investigate the evolution of specific tale types and trace their transformations in various media from oral storytelling through print to film, television, and the stage. Finally, we will consider potential strategies for the reinterpretation and rewriting of fairy tales. Fulfills SAS core goal AH p, WC d.

Contemporary German Media & Society
01:470:299:01
Anna Mayer
T8 7:40pm-9:00pm, Academic Building 2150

Prerequisite: 01:470:102 or 01:470:121, or higher. 

In German. If taken twice, 470:299 may be counted for three credits towards the major or minor. 

The main goal of this course is to increase the students' cultural awareness through the study of the various media and their role in contemporary German society, while furthering the students' German language skills through consistent speaking, listening, reading, and writing. In this course, students will explore the traditional, modernized, and news media and the role they play in different realms of contemporary German society. Chosen topics of the course are crucial to understanding the modern German-speaking world and include themes such as social structure, politics, culture, and everyday life. Special attention is paid to cultural comparisons between Germany and the United States.

Introduction to Literary and Cultural Analysis: The Importance of Being Earnest - On Our Irony
01:470:302:01
Manuel Clemens
TTh6 4:30pm-5:50pm, Scott Hall 220

Prerequisite: 01:470:232 (Student who are performing well may also enroll simultaneously in 231-232 and 301-302.)
In German.
Please note: 470:302 may be repeated for credit when topics vary!

Irony is a widespread contemporary form of relating to the world by not being all too serious about what one says or does. As the essayist Christy Wampole puts it critically, irony is a “credit card you never have to pay back” because we enjoy its superfluous engagement with the world by dipping into various kinds of lifestyles,opinions, and fashions without experiencing any serious consequences. This course aims to analyze different forms of irony. The discussion starts however with the experience of a non-ironic childhood around 1945 during the last months of WWII and its aftermaths (Rolf Rothmann, Im Frühling sterben), and subsequently jumps to contemporary literary narratives discussing politics, art and the daily life in a humorous-ironic way (Christian Kracht, 1979, Sven Regner, Herr Lehmann, Ben Lerner, Abschied von Antocha).Fulfills SAS core goals AH p, WC d, r.

Dreams & Delusions (German Short Narrative)
01:470:325:01
Nicola Behrmann
MTh3 11:30am-12:50pm, Frelinghuysen Hall B1

Prerequisite: 01:470:232.
In German. 

This course will take you on a journey through roughly 200 years of German literature. We will explore the impact of dreams, delusions, nightmares, and utopias in German culture and discuss the role of the unconscious, drugs, cinema, love, violence, and the impact of a traumatic history. While focusing on short prose texts, we will include film clips, graphic novels, and illustrations into our discussions based on the readings. Throughout the semester, students will develop their own practices of dream interpretation by keeping a dream journal.

Marx, Nietzsche, Freud
01:470:371:01
Cross-listed with Comparative Literature 01:195:374:01, and Philosophy 01:730:344:01
Nicholas Rennie
T2 9:50am-11:10am, Academic Building 1170
Th2 9:50am-11:10am, Milledoler Hall 100

In English. No prerequisites.

Marx, Nietzsche, Freud
01:470:371:H1 (Honors)
Cross-listed with Comparative Literature 01:195:374:01, and Philosophy 01:730:344:01
Nicholas Rennie
T2 9:50am-11:10am, Academic Building 1170
Th2 9:50am-11:10am, Milledoler Hall 100

In English. No prerequisites.

What is the relation between politics and literature? What is the relationship between literary expression and prevailing ideologies? In this course we will be reading and discussing a selection of key writings by Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Sigmund Freud, who revolutionized modern philosophy, theology, psychology, aesthetics, social and political science, gender studies, historiography, literature, and the arts. We will undertake a brief foray into Nietzsche's early deconstruction of culture; Marxian readings indicative both of the earlier parameters of the project and its mature "delivery"; and the vicissitudes of the Freudian project as it extends itself to the domain of cultural critique. Furthermore, Bertolt Brecht' theater plays and theory will serve as a proving ground for the relevance of Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud. Fulfills SAS core goals HST and AH o.

Topics in German Literature & Civilization: REVENGE!
01:470:390:01
Cross-listed with Comparative Literature 01:195:397:01
Anna Henke
MW4 1:10pm-2:30pm, Scott Hall 202

In English.

This course will explore revenge and melancholia in their relation to mourning (both as stages and substitutes for the grieving process). Bacon called revenge “a kind of wild justice,” an idea that gained traction during the Enlightenment as philosophers worked to tame legal systems, basing them on reason rather than the wild logic of vengeance. Already in the Elizabethan era, however, playwrights were exploring on stage the dangers vigilantism posed to the state. It is perhaps no coincidence that at the same time that the community began to grapple critically with the violence of anger, the collective imagination began to reflect on – indeed it became consumed with – a different mood altogether: melancholy. Revenge and melancholy clashed most famously in the figure of Hamlet, whose dual responses to his father’s death interfere with one another: his passive, multifaceted and fascinating melancholy interrupts his active drive for revenge.

Topic in German Literature & Civilization: Figures of Exile
01:470:392:01
Cross-listed with Comparative Literature 01:195:397:02
Professor Susanne Luedemann
TTh4 1:10pm-2:30pm, Academic Building 4050

In English.

"To uproot oneself is the greatest of virtues, to collaborate in the uprooting of others is the most terrible of crimes." German writer Peter Handke quotes this phrase by Simone Weill in a text called "Die Lehre der Sainte-Victoire" ("The Teaching of Sainte-Victoire"). It shows exile as a Janus-faced figure, depending on whether one is the subject or the object of deracination. The metaphor of deracination/uprooting itself, however, presupposes a concept of man that conceives him as a plant-like being, growing and thriving only in his native soil. Franz Kafka 'deracinates' this metaphor itself in a well known simile which says that "we are like tree trunks in the snow. Apparently, they lie smoothly and a little push should be enough to set them rolling. No, it can't be done, for they are firmly wedded to the ground. But see, even that is only apparently so.” In this course, we will read literary and theoretical texts on exile and 'exiled' writing. We will also discuss the differences between exiles, refugees, expatriats, émigrées, and other (political and literary) figures of homelessness. Readings will include texts by Hannah Arendt, Edward Said, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Joseph Conrad, Thomas Mann, Peter Handke, James Baldwin, Imre Kertesz, Theodor W. Adorno, and others.

 

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