Fall 2022

Fall 2022

  • 470:101 Elementary German

     

    This course will introduce students to the language and culture of German-speaking countries, using both prepared and authentic materials with theme-related vocabulary and grammatical structures. Students will have the opportunity to practice listening, reading, writing, and speaking in German through in-class activities and homework assignments. The program of the course corresponds to the Level A1 (Beginner) of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), a widely accepted European standard for language proficiency.

    By the end of the semester students will be able to:

    • understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type
    • introduce themselves and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where he/she lives, people they know and things they have
    • interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help.More specifically, students will be able to:
    • talk about themselves, their families, and their origins
    • talk about weather and clothing
    • order food and drinks in a restaurant or a café, discuss food and cooking, use cooking recipes
    • discuss different living situations, talk about houses, rooms, etc.
    • talk about their time and make appointments
    • orient themselves in a German-speaking urban setting and ask for directions
    • talk about things that happened in the past;
    • talk about professions, job, study, recreation, and daily life
    • talk about some major landmarks and places of interest of the German-speaking countries
    • talk about health and health issues
    • express their intentions, obligations and necessities.

    No prerequisites. This course is taught in German with some explanation of grammar points in English. Not open for credit to students who have had two or more years of secondary school German. Students of 101 are strongly encouraged to enroll in Elementary German Lab 103.

     

  • 470:103 German for Travel

     

    This course will introduce students to the language and culture of German-speaking countries focusing on the language competencies particularly relevant in travel situations.

    By the end of the semester students will be able to speak about themselves in general and as travelers, ask basic questions about travel, discuss their travel interests and express likes and dislikes, speak about German-speaking countries and their inhabitants, orient themselves in means of transportation and accommodations used in Europe, purchase tickets and book hotel rooms on German-language websites.

    The course is taught in German with some explanation of grammar points and cultural references in English. Not open to students who have completed 01:470:102, 01:470:121, or the equivalent.

  • 470:104 German Conversation

     

    This course will introduce students to the language and culture of German-speaking countries focusing on the language competencies particularly relevant for oral communication in everyday situations. By the end of the semester students will be able 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;
    • express likes and dislikes. The course is taught in German with some explanation of grammar points and cultural references in English.

    The course is taught in German with some explanation of grammar points and cultural references in English. Not open to students who have completed 01:470:102, 01:470:121, or the equivalent.

  • 470:105 German for Reading Knowledge

    Professor Alexander Pichugin

    This course, taught in English and German, is intended for undergraduate students without previous knowledge of the German language. The course develops basic reading competencies in German. The texts read in the course are chosen from the humanities, the natural sciences, and the social sciences.

    By the end of the semester students will be able to:

    • apply specific reading strategies to reading a text in German;
    • read a text in German with correct pronunciation;
    • recognize some grammar phenomena and apply this knowledge to understanding;
    • apply some basic passive vocabulary to reading German texts;
    • efficiently use online and paper-based dictionaries.
  • 470:131 Intermediate German I

    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 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 personal and community life, media, travel, and art. 

    Fulfills SAS core goal AH q.

  • 470:132 Intermediate German II

    Prerequisite: 01:470:131 or placement.

     

    In this course students will further develop their competencies in German language and culture of the German-speaking countries on the intermediate level, using both prepared and authentic materials with theme-related vocabulary and grammatical structures. Students will have the opportunity to practice listening, reading, writing, and speaking in German through various in-class activities and homework assignments. Using a variety of media, such as written texts, video, and audio clips, students will explore the course’s five major themes: Climate and Environment; Social Behaviors; Generations; Migration; Europe.

    The program of the course corresponds to the Level B1.2, which is the first half of Level B1 (Intermediate) of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), a widely accepted European standard for language proficiency. By the end of the course sequence, students will be able to understand the main points of clear standard input on familiar matters regularly encountered in work, school, leisure, etc.; deal with most situations likely to arise whilst travelling in an area where the language is spoken; produce simple connected text on topics which are familiar or of personal interest; describe experiences and events, dreams, hopes and ambitions and briefly give reasons and explanations for opinions and plans.

    The course is taught in German with some explanation of grammar points in English.

    Fulfills SAS core goal AH q

  • 470:231 Advanced German I

    Prerequisites: German 132 or placement test.

    In German.

    Alexandra Friedrich

    This course explores 20th century German culture, literature, and politics through an examination of the city of Berlin. Drawing on film, literature, and audio features we will focus on the following topics: Expressionism and Dada, Cabaret in the Golden Twenties, resistance against the Nazis, 1968 movement & left wing terrorism, the Berlin Wall & GDR protest culture, and contemporary Berlin scene. An emphasis will be placed on written exercises, listening and reading skills developing the ability to discuss and argue opinions, as well as a thorough review of grammar. All readings, discussions, and written works are in German.

  • 470:244 Topics in German Culture: The Language of Music

    Professor Alexander Pichugin

    Taught in English. NO Prerequisites or knowledge of German necessary.

    This course invites students to explore the world of music and its connections to language. Students will trace the development of music and its connection to language from a historical and cultural perspective. Students will study the fundamentals of music and discover basic music terminology, which will be used throughout the course as a foundation for discussion of music throughout history. Eras covered will include Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic and a variety of 20th Century genres. Students will gain an understanding of the context in which music was created by recognizing and aurally identifying style characteristics, genres, and representative masterworks from various periods.

    The course is conducted in English. Some optional course materials in other European languages are offered.

    Ability to read German, Italian, or French, as well as music score are welcome, but not required.

    This course is a mini-course starting on October 27, 2022 and running for seven weeks. The meetings of the course are conducted face-to-face.

  • 470:301 Introduction to Literary and Cultural Analysis: Spirit of Discovery

    Professor Alexander Pichugin

    Taught in German. Prerequisite:470:232, or simultaneous enrollment in 01:470:231 or 232.

    The images of the discoverer, explorer, and researcher, ranging from “world-illuminator” to “mad scientist,” have been a strong discourse-building element in German-speaking Europe of the 20th and 21st Centuries, which finds its reflection in all forms of cultural production and is especially prominent in literature and film. This course examines the representation of discoverers and their discoveries in German-language literature, cinema, television, and press. By studying different genres of literature and other forms of cultural production in relation to the representation of discoverers, explorers, and researchers, as well as the related concepts (travel, scientific discoveries, moral aspects of scientific activity), students will gain insights into ideas, trends and discourses that have shaped contemporary German-language culture. We will discuss a wide range of materials, including both non-fiction and literary prose texts, plays, documentary and feature films, an audiobook, as well as selections from newspapers and magazines related to the images of discoverers and discoveries.

    Fulfills SAS core requirements AHp, WCr, WCd. 300-level German-language courses open to students who have either successfully completed German 232 or will be simultaneously enrolled in either German 231 or 232. May be repeated for credit.

  • 470:304 German and Comparative Literature: Justice and Violence

    Professor Dominik Zechner

    Taught in English. No prerequisites.

    Justice, violence, and the law are entangled in complex ways. While we may think that if we conscientiously followed the law, our actions would necessarily turn out to be just, justice inevitably exceeds the boundaries of legal stipulations. In fact, it is quite uncertain whether and how it is possible to make a just decision, to act or speak justly. While, on the one hand, the law is never fully able to represent justice, it is, on the other hand, fundamentally reliant on violence. No law can be enforced without violence––in Hobbes’ words, “covenants, without the sword, are but words.” The question then arises how legal violence is different from the unrestrained violence of lawlessness. And whether we could conceive of a kind of law that were based on what Judith Butler has called “the force of nonviolence.” Our seminar will explore this intricate conceptual relationship and expose students to seminal works by philosophers, theorists, and writers including Franz Kafka, Walter Benjamin, Hannah Arendt, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Werner Hamacher, and Judith Butler.

    Fulfills SAS Core Goals AHo, AHp, WCd

  • 470:371 Marx, Nietzsche, Freud

    Professor Nicholas Rennie

    Exploration of the work of three German writers who revolutionized modern philosophy, theology, psychology, aesthetics, social and political science, gender studies, historiography, literature and the arts. We will be reading and discussing a selection of key writings by Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche and Sigmund Freud. Along with these we’ll examine a sampling of texts that were important for their work, and writings that later both reflected their influence and drew their ideas in new directions. In English. No prerequisites. Fulfills SAS core goals HST-1, AHo. 

    (Students who have completed Introductory German 101 or the equivalent, or who have Prof. Rennie’s permission, are encouraged to enroll in the 1-credit companion module “The Language of Marx, Nietzsche and Freud” (01:991:121:E1), which will focus on the original German-language concepts and formulations in select passages relevant to the principal themes of the main course “Marx, Nietzsche, Freud." Contact Prof. Rennie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information and/or to register. 

  • 470:388 Topics: Philosophy and the Event of Literature

    Professor Dominik Zechner

    Taught in English. No prerequisites.

    Relationship status: it’s complicated! The relation between philosophical and literary discourses has been an inherently fraught one. While philosophy has undoubtedly been intrigued and inspired by literature and drawn to the poetic and literary word – it has also systematically tried to dominate, master, and domesticate literature. At times, it even set out to expel and annul the presence of poets. Yet, these attempts at domination are never quite successful. There is something about literature that necessarily eludes the philosophical grasp and withdraws from logical systematization. As a matter of fact, literature has been observed actively to undermine and shake up the philosophical edifice. Werner Hamacher aptly terms this “the quaking of presentation.” We will approach literature’s elusive, interruptive quality under the heading of the “event” – and our seminar will trace its unruly occurrence throughout the 20th century as we read philosophers reading – and as we watch the poets take philosophy. Get ready to read Adorno on Beckett, Deleuze on Melville, Derrida on Kafka, Heidegger on Hölderlin, and more!