Fall Courses

Primarily for Undergraduates         

GRMN0100     Beginning German                
A course in the language and cultures of German-speaking countries. Four hours per week plus regular computer and listening comprehension work. At the end of the year, students will be able to communicate successfully about everyday topics. This is the first half of a year-long course whose first semester grade is normally a temporary one. Neither semester may be elected independently without special written permission. The final grade submitted at the end of the course work in GRMN 0200 covers the entire year and is recorded as the final grade for both semesters. Students who have a conflict with the Tuesday hour should contact the instructor.
Jane Sokolosky  
S01 MWF 9-9:50, T 12-12:50
S02 MWF 11-11:50, T 12-12:50
S03 MWF 12-12:50, T 12-12:50        
S04 MWF 1-1:50, T 12-12:50                  

GRMN0300     Intermediate German I
Focuses on deepening students' understanding of modern German culture by reading texts and viewing films pertinent to Germany today. Intended to provide a thorough review of German grammar and help students develop their writing, reading, listening, and speaking skills. Frequent writing assignments. Four hours per week. Recommended prerequisite: GRMN 0200. Students who have a conflict with the Thursday hour should contact the instructor. 
Jane Sokolosky        
S01 MWF 10-10:50, Th 12-12:50     
S02 MWF 1-1:50, Th 12-12:50

GRMN0500F 20th Century German Culture
A broad exploration of twentieth-century German culture using many kinds of written and visual texts (e.g. literature, journalism, film, art). While continuing to work on all four language skills (speaking, listening, reading, writing) students will gain more intensive knowledge about German culture, society, and history. In German. Recommended prerequisite: GRMN 0400. WRIT
Kristina Mendicino    S01 MWF 11-11:50am

 GRMN1320I   What Is An Image? German Aesthetics and Art From Lessing to Heidegger
A survey of some of the most important German-language contributions to theories of art, alongside a discussion of some major art-works from the German tradition. Authors include Lessing, Kant, Schiller, Hegel, Nietzsche, Benjamin, Adorno, and Heidegger. Emphasis will be on how aesthetics intersects with literary theory and the idea of critique, and also how it contributes to discussions about knowledge, subjectivity, and power. All readings in English translation. In English.
Zachary Sng               S01 TuTh 1-2:20pm

GRMN1320R Musil, Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften
“When we see our Great Authors carefully sizing up this situation and doing their best to mold it into an image of an alert population and honoring its great personalities, shall we not be grateful to them?” asks Robert Musil in The Man Without Qualities, which has often been named among the greatest novels of twentieth-century modernism. Musil, however, places such qualifications in question, and thus poses a radical challenge to every ethos of “greatness,” from “Great Authors,” to the authorities promoting “Greater Germany” during National Socialism. This course is devoted to reading and analyzing Musil’s novel. In German.
Kristina Mendicino    S01 W 3-5:30pm

GRMN1441C Introduction to German Romantic Poetry
German Romanticism reflects a field of writing in which poetry was as powerful and seductive as it was riven by conscious conflict. Through numerous experimentations with open forms, Romanticism counteracts classical unities and closure. In this course we will closely read and discuss – with occasional turns towards music and the visual arts – a representative selection of poems by Brentano, Eichendorff, Günderode, Heine, Hölderlin, Novalis, among others. Taught in English. All students welcome.
Edith Kunz                  S01 TuTh 2:30-3:50pm

GRMN1440Z Gespräche
When we are in dialogue, talking and listening to one another, language is not simply the medium of linguistic exchange, it is also exposed to unexpected encounters. This seminar explores what can happen in the course of such encounters by looking at Socratic dialogues (Plato); dialogues between animals (Aesop, Lessing), and dialogues of the dead (Lucian), dialogues in spiritistic settings (Kafka); dialogues on dialogues (Schlegel); failed dialogues (Hebel); dialogues in and between poems (Hölderlin, Brecht, Celan); phone conversations (Valentin); interrogations (Brecht, testifying before the House of Unamerican Activities); interviews (Arendt, Gaus); and filmed encounters (Kluge, Heiner Müller, Genet). In German.
Thomas Schestag       S01 TuTh 10:30-11:50am

GRMN2661M Kästchen, Kisten, Krypten/Caskets, Cases, Crypts
The belief in a strict distinction between form and content features prominently in most accepted understandings of language and words. Words are considered containers that are to be emptied or filled. Focusing on this motif and exploring its various figurations (caskets, boxes, cases, and crypts) in literary, philosophical, and psychoanalytical texts, this graduate seminar will question this assumption. Authors read in the course of the semester include Shakespeare, Goethe, Poe, Baudelaire, Freud, Benjamin, Abraham/Torok, and Derrida. Texts in English, French, and German. Taught in English. Participants from different fields of interest are welcome.
Thomas Schestag       S01 Th 4-6:30pm

GRMN2661Q Goethe’s Faust
Faust is one of the most inspiring and complex dramas written in German, with immense influence on later literary texts. Its form is stunningly experimental and plays out all metric forms that were known in the age of Goethe in German literature. The two-part drama takes place in a time that measures from antiquity to the early nineteenth century, but it is, throughout, a representation of existence within a modern socio-economic dynamic. In this course, we will closely read and discuss selected scenes. Taught in German.
Edith Kunz                  S01 M 3-5:30pm

SWED0100 S01 Beginning Swedish
Swedish 100 is an introduction to both Sweden and Swedish, covering various aspects of Swedish history, art and society, as well as screening at least three Swedish films per semester. The course packet contains the text/workbook, Mål 1, with additional materials. We will cover one chapter of Mål per week, with quizzes every three weeks. There will be a midterm and a final exam, along with a short take-home project.  This is a small class, so your presence is absolutely required. Emphasis will be placed on speaking and understanding Swedish. Good will and good humor are required.
Ann Weinstein           S01 TuTh 4-5:30

Courses Offered Beyond German Studies that May Count Towards the Concentration

COLT1210       Introduction to the Theory of Literature                           S. Bernstein / P. Szendy
An historical introduction to problems of literary theory from the classical to the postmodern. Issues to be examined include mimesis, rhetoric, hermeneutics, history, psychoanalysis, formalisms and ideological criticism (questions of race, gender, sexuality, postcolonialism). Primarily for advanced undergraduates. Lectures, discussions; several short papers.

COLT1710C     Literary Translation Workshop                                                        S. Nakayasu
The primary focus of this course is the practice of literary translation as an art. Using the workshop format, each student will complete a project by the end of the semester. Examples and theoretical texts will illuminate the historical, ethical, cultural, political, and aesthetic values that underlie every translation, keeping an eye towards opening up the field beyond inherited practices to consider the contemporary implications of our choices, intentions, and purposes in translation. Open to all levels. Heritage speakers are welcome, collaboration is permitted, and an open-spirited approach to this developing and fascinating practice is strongly recommended.

COLT1810N     Freud: Writer and Reader                                                           S. Stewart-Steinberg
A broad survey of Freud's writings, with particular emphasis on psychoanalysis' relevance to literary theory and cultural analysis. Readings include Freud's major works, as well as secondary sources focused on applications to literary studies.

HIST1230A      Revolution and Romanticism in 19th century Europe                  M. Gluck
A lecture course, primarily for juniors and seniors, that focuses on salient philosophic, artistic, and ideological currents of 19th-century Europe. Beginning with the crisis of political and cultural legitimacy posed by the French Revolution, it concludes with the consolidation of bourgeois culture in the 1860s and 1870s and the two great scientific systematizers of these decades: Darwin and Marx. WRIT

HMAN2400G It’s About Time: Temporalities of Waiting in Theory,       
Literature, and Film                                                                                                        P. Szendy                   

This is a seminar on four forms of temporality: suspension, rupture, heterochronia, and coming to an end. These forms will be explored as pertaining to politics, theology, and experience. Agamben’s reading of Paul (The Time That Remains) provides us with a conceptual grid, and “waiting for the Messiah” will be one of the modes of temporalization examined. Kafka’s staging of delay in The Castle, Fritz Lang’s invention of the filmic countdown, and the “checkpoint” in occupied Palestine will constitute major counterpoints. Students will work on collaborative assignments defined collectively and focusing on a specific event, text, or film.

JUDS1713        Introduction to Yiddish Culture and Language                              R. Rojanski
Yiddish was the language spoken by most Jews in Eastern Europe and the countries to which they emigrated (including the U.S., England, South Africa, South American countries, and Israel) from the nineteenth century until after the Holocaust. It was the basis for a transnational Jewish culture and literature, and it played a central role in modern Jewish political life. We will explore the history of Yiddish culture and the development of the Yiddish press, literature, and cinema. The connection between Yiddish and modern Jewish politics will also be discussed. Students in this course will also have the opportunity to develop a basic knowledge of the Yiddish language. DPLL

MUSC1500A Major Masters and Repertoires of Music: Bach                                L. Jodry
An examination of the life and work of Bach, including its placce in German church music, views of his contemporaries and explanation of hi manuscript and publishing history.

PHIL0400         Marxism                                                                                              C. Larmore
In the first part of the course, we will examine Marx's economic, political, and philosophical writings, focusing on his analysis of capitalism, his critique of liberal democracy, and his theory of history. Then in the second part, we will look at some recent attempts to renew and extend the Marxist tradition. WRIT

PHIL1001         Heidegger                                                                                           C. Larmore
This course focuses on Heidegger's masterpiece, Being and Time. Attention will also be given to the background in Husserl as well as to some of Heidegger's lecture courses in the 1920s. Prerequisite: Two courses in philosophy.

PHIL1290         Kant's Moral Philosophy                                                                  P. Guyer
An introduction to the central themes of Kant's moral philosophy, including autonomy, freedom, happiness, obligation, and virtue. Kant's position in the history of moral philosophy will also be considered. Readings to include all of Kant's major writings in this field, thus Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals, Critique of Practical Reason, Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason, and Metaphysics of Morals, as well as several essays and lectures. Work will include two short papers and one term paper.