Representative FLL Graduate Course Descriptions

Explore a representative list of some of the most fascinating courses presented by our graduate faculty here at the FLL Department. You will see that FLL graduate courses are germane to today's topics and critical theory, as well as student interest and academic need.


Classics:
CLST 333CLST 334GREK 301/302LATN 303/304 


Comparative Literature & Cultural Studies :  
COMP 500COMP 580aCOMP 580bCOMP 580cCOMP 580dCOMP 580e

French
FREN 502FREN 512FREN 520FREN 542FREN 552FREN 580aFREN 580bFREN 580cFREN 588,FREN 600

German :  
ARTH 582GRMN 550aGRMN 550bGRMN 552GRMN 553aGRMN 553bGRMN 553cGRMN 553d,GRMN 556a
GRMN 556b

Modern Languages
MLNG 500


Classics

CLST 333 Topics in Roman Literature, History, and Culture
Monica CyrinoLorenzo F. Garcia Jr. & Osman Umurhan

This topics course is offered as a study of individual authors, genres, or periods of Roman literature and culture. Previous versions of this course have focused on close readings and stagings of Roman drama (Plautus, Terrence, Seneca).

CLST 334 Topics in Greek Literature, History, and Culture
Monica Cyrino, Lorenzo F. Garcia Jr. & Osman Umurhan

This topics course is offered as a study of individual authors, genres, or periods of Greek literature and culture. One recent version of this course focused on "Homer, Hesiod, and the Near East" and traced literary and mythological influences of Near Eastern and Egyptian cultures upon the Greek epic tradition while tracing the continuing scholarly debates that followed the pulication of Martin Bernal's Black Athena (1987).

GREK 301/302 Advanced Greek
Monica Cyrino , Lorenzo F. Garcia Jr. & Osman Umurhan

Students in this course read ancient Greek texts organized by author, genre, or topic. Recent author-based offerings have focused on Homer's Odyssey, Euripides' Bacchae, and Plato's Ion and Republic. Topic-based offerings have focused on the figure of Helen in Greek rhetoric (Gorgias' Encomium of Helen, Isocrates' Encomium of Helen, Euripides' Helen), and on monstrosity in Greek literature (Homer's Odyssey, Euripides' Cyclops, select Idylls of Theocritus).

LATN 303/304 Advanced Latin
Monica CyrinoLorenzo F. Garcia Jr. & Osman Umurhan

Students in this course read ancient Latin texts organized by author, genre, or topic. Recent author-based offerings have focused on Virgil's Aeneid, Lucretius' De rerum natura, and Horace's Odes. Topic-based offerings have focused on erotic verse in the age of Augustus, and the representation of class in Petronius' Satyrica.

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Comparative Literature & Cultural Studies

COMP 500 (Introduction to Graduate Study in Comparative Literature) Criticism and Theory
Pamela Cheek

What is theory? How do we use it and when do we resist it? This course provides an introduction to tools used regularly in the fields of comparative literature and cultural studies for analyzing literary and cultural texts. It introduces influential movements in theory (including structuralism, psychoanalysis, Marxist criticism, deconstruction, cultural studies, postcolonial studies, gender and sexuality theory) by looking at their practitioners and their critical filiations. Our focus will be on learning how to ask the questions that these movements have used productively to analyze culture, as well as on identifying an argument's limits. By the end of the course, you will be familiar with a number of critical "moves" that you can build on in your future writing and thinking.

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COMP 580 The North African Novel
Raji Vallury

The purpose of this course is to study the North African novel written in French and Arabic from the 1950s up to the present. All texts will be read in English translation, but students wishing to read them in French can do so. Our selection comprises eight novels from Tunisia, Morocco, and Algeria, which will be primarily considered through the lens of these countries' colonial and post-colonial histories. This will allow us to understand the complexity of the political, linguistic, and cultural ties between France and Tunisia, Morocco, and Algeria. We will also look at themes such as literary resistance to colonial power, the construction of national identity, the relationship between Islam and the postcolonial nation-state, and the question of gender and writing. Our analysis of the literary style and thematic content of the novels will be supplemented by readings in colonial and post-colonial theory. Authors and novels include: Albert Memmi: The Pillar of Salt; Mouloud Feraoun: The Poor Man's Son; Kateb Yacine: Nedjma; Mohammed Choukri: For Bread Alone; Tahar Ben Jelloun: The Sand Child; Assia Djebar: Fantasia, An Algerian Calvacade; Fatima Mernissi: Dreams of Trespass; and Yasmina Khadra: The Swallows of Kabul.

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COMP 580 Women of Islam: Writers, Thinkers, and Filmmakers from North Africa
Raji Vallury

In this course, we will study women's writing of French and Arabic expression from Algeria and Morocco. All texts will be read in English translation. Although both countries have their unique historical and political identity, their geographical proximity has shaped a shared cultural and religious landscape, and has resulted in a jointly inherited burden of French colonization. We will focus specifically on novels produced in the last twenty years, well after the respective independence of each country from French rule (1956 for Morocco, and 1962 for Algeria). Through an analysis of thematic content and narrative style, we will examine the feminist resistance to religious, political, and social oppression. The theoretical work of Muslim feminists will allow us to appreciate the unique nature of the relationship between Islam, democracy, and feminism. These thinkers undertake a rereading and reinterpretation of Islam that restores the principles of gender equality and tolerance to its religious and philosophical tradition; principles that have been repressed or silenced by a 'male elite'. A consideration of the particular histories of the women's rights movements in Algeria and Morocco will enhance our understanding of themes such as the literary inscription of feminine voices in the political sphere, the reclaiming of a feminine materiality and sexuality, and the charting out of a positive gender politics. The literary texts and theoretical texts will be supplemented by a series of contemporary films and documentaries by women filmmakers from North Africa.

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COMP 580 | FREN 584 (Seminar/Special Topics in Women Writers)  Women Writers of the Late Enlightenment
Pamela Cheek

How did women live and write after the Enlightenment? This course examines primarily the fictions, but also the correspondences and travel accounts written by late eighteenth-century women writers (French, English, Dutch, Swiss and German) alongside their lived experience. We will look at these writers and their work with a focus on gender and geography. What sorts of transnational relationships did these women forge through their own travel, letter writing and publishing and what kind of larger world and related gender identities did their work imagine? We will read the work of a variety of authors, including Elizabeth Inchbald (English, but she translated from French and was translated into French by Charrière), Mary Wollstonecraft (English, but she traveled to and wrote about France and Scandinavia), Isabelle de Charrière (Dutch, but she lived in Switzerland and wrote in French), Françoise de Graffigny (from Lorraine, but she lived in Paris and wrote about Peru), Germaine de Staël (French, but she was of half Swiss parentage, married to a Swede, and ultimately exiled), Elizabeth Marsh (English, but she was conceived in the West Indies and captured by Moroccan corsairs), and Sophie La Roche (German, but she traveled to and wrote about Switzerland, Holland, France and England). Texts will generally be available in both English and in the original language. Students will be encouraged to begin work on a writer or a problem early in the term and to develop it into a research paper (or, in some cases, a substantive translation).

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COMP 580 | ENGL 580 | FREN 580 | GRMN 580 | MLNG 580 | PHIL 541/441  Zoophilosophy
Walter Putnam

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated."— Gandhi

Many philosophical and literary attempts to locate, define, describe, and understand the human animal have been formulated with respect to the larger animal world or to some notion of animality. Is man a "featherless biped," as Plato claimed or a "soulless machine" as Descartes believed? Do animals feel pain like us? Do they know they exist? How can there be thought without language? What separates the human from the non-human animal? And what do we share in common? These are some of the pressing questions that are being re-evaluated in light of scientific discoveries and cultural transformations along the fault line between human and non-human animals. The bulk of the semester will focus on continental philosophers who have based some aspect of their thinking on animals: Nietzsche, Heidegger, Foucault, Deleuze, Derrida, and Jean-Luc Nancy, to cite the most prominent. Questions of identity and ethics will direct our thinking as we deal with issues of the status and treatment of animals. This course will bridge the literary and the philosophical by pairing texts such as Kafka's Metamorphosis in relation to Deleuze and Guattari's concept of "becoming-animal." We will read Nobel laureate J.C. Coetzee's Lives of Animals in dialogue with Peter Singer's Animal Liberation. Finally, I would like to devote some attention to the visual representation of the postmodern animal. This multi-disciplinary approach will allow us to gauge the range and richness of thought not only "about" but "with" the animal.

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COMP 580 | GRMN 556 | MLNG 580   German Cinema: How German Can It Be?
Katrin Schröter

This course will present a synoptic view of German cinema from its inception to contemporary manifestations. Special emphasis will be placed on Weimar Cinema, the New German Cinema of the '70s, and German cinema after unification. The concept of the nation and national cinema will be the central terms in the examination of key discourses with respect to German Cinema, such as: the Autorenfilm (authors' cinema), the transformation of the public sphere, and the shifting emphasis from film as cultural artifact to film as cultural commodity during the 1990s. Readings and discussions will also focus on the complex interrelationship between film, history, and society. In addition, the class will explore the relationship of German Cinema to Hollywood and movements within other national cinemas, such as the French Nouvelle Vague.

COMP 580 Fairy Tales
Susanne Baackmann

See GRNM 550 below.

COMP 580 Reconfiguring the Subject—Building the Nation-State
Susanne Baackmann

See ARTH 582 (GRMN 580) below

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French

FREN 502 La Quête du Graal: les contes arthuriens de Chrétien de Troyes
Marina Peters-Newell

This course is a study of Chrétien de Troyes' twelfth-century Arthurian tales, with attention paid to the difference between print culture and the oral tradition. It examines the semiotic quest for the Holy Grail, and the accompanying sociological implications for the individual, the female voice, and the traditional knight.

FREN 512 Essayons Montaigne : l'autorité et le moi dans la Renaissance 
Marina Peters-Newell

Montaigne's Essays give us broad insight into sixteenth-century France, its epistemological modes, notions of authority, of the Other, and the potential credibility of the self. This course will look very carefully at the language and vocabulary used to convey not one Truth but multiple meanings inherent in the understanding of the self.

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FREN 520 French Thought and Literature: What's Philosophy Got to Do with It?
Stephen Bishop

Most people know that French philosophy has a long, important, and influential presence in Western culture. Names such as Descartes, Sartre, and Rousseau are broadly recognizable, and others such as Pascal, Diderot, and Bergson are usually familiar as well. And yet what does one actually know about what these names represent? What are the ideas, systems of thought, and questions posed that made these and other French thinkers so broadly famous and respected? How do they fit into the long tradition of Western philosophy? Who even counts as a "philosopher"? And last but certainly not least, what does any of this philosophical importance and influence have to do with literary and cultural studies?

This course will answer these questions by investigating an overview of seminal French philosophers from the 17th century to the present. The basic concepts, questions, and movements will be studied for comprehension and discussion. The course is not designed to be a graduate level philosophy course – it is instead a graduate level literature and cultural studies course that examines the utility and applicability of philosophy to those disciplines. Accordingly, a background in philosophy, while certainly useful, is not at all necessary.
Some writers to be studied include: Pascal, Descartes, Voltaire, Diderot, Rousseau, Bergson, Sartre, Weil, Camus, Merleau-Ponty, Levinas, and Derrida, as well as a few selections to be determined by student interest (for example, Montaigne by someone in the Montaigne seminar would be a logical choice). Not all readings will be traditionally philosophical texts (i.e., while selections from Descartes' Méditations métaphysiques are, Sartre's "Les mouches" is not). Readings and class discussions are in French.
Students will be asked to participate in class, give one expository presentation on a reading, and write either three short (4-5 pages) papers or one long (12-15 pages) paper. Paper topics can either be an examination and analysis of a philosophical issue, question, or movement or an application of such concepts to a literary or cultural studies context. The course is open to undergraduates with the requisite background and desire.

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FREN 542 Sublime Mediocrity: The Novel Art of Republican Equality in 19th Century France
Raji Vallury

"Le beau n'a qu'une forme, le laid en a des milliers," declares Victor Hugo in his Préface de Cromwell, written in 1827. With this statement, he inaugurates a bold rupture with the normative model of Aristotlean poetics that dominates French letters for over four centuries. Eighteen years later, Baudelaire celebrates the break from the representational hierarchies of classicism in his Salon de 1845, when he heralds an aesthetics of the modern in the figure of the painter "qui saura arracher à la vie actuelle son côté épique, et nous faire voir et comprendre, avec de la couleur ou du dessin, combien nous sommes grands et poétiques dans nos cravates et nos bottines vernies." Romanticism and Realism bring about a profound democratization of the sphere of representation by conferring equal visibility upon subjects previously relegated to the domain of the ordinary, the obscure, and the mediocre. In this course, we will study the tensions and paradoxes of aesthetic and political democracy in 19th-century France. How can we understand an intellectual, artistic, and cultural landscape marked by the passion for a revolutionary social order on the one hand, and the nostalgia for a past nobility on the other? What do we make of the conflict between the democratic ideal and the aristocratic cult of the self, the energetic and triumphant arrivisme of Napoleon and the anxiety caused by radical political, economic, and social upheaval? What contradictions do we see between the political equality of Republicanism, the Romantic will to artistic exceptionalism, and the Realist desire to both capture and transform the abject materiality of the world? These are some questions we will explore by reading the following novels: Stendhal's Le Rouge et le Noir, Balzac's Le Père Goriot, Flaubert's L'éducation sentimentale, and Zola's Nana. We will also look at some important painters of the time such as Ingres, Delacroix, Daumier, Millet, Courbet, and Manet. Readings will be supplemented by selected critical and aesthetic writings by the above authors, as well as seminal texts of scholarly interpretation.

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FREN 552 A Voice of One's Own: French and Francophone Feminisms
Stephen Bishop

This course will consider the writings of women who have lived around the francophone world (Southeast Asia, Africa, Québec, the Antilles, Belgium, and France) in an attempt to investigate issues of feminine identity and voice. We will look at women's attempts to express their reality(s) under the supposed multiple yokes of sexual, colonial, religious, social, and linguistic oppression. We will begin with a look at some French feminist theory, and then will consider its "real life" applications in a series of texts. These texts are written by women in different positions within the colonial framework - by those living both as natives and foreigners in both the metropole and the former colonies. The principal questions will be how such positioning differences affect women's lives individually and in society, whether they create substantive differences in quality of life for women in colonial versus non-colonial settings, what can (should?) be done to eliminate such differences, and if any societies exist for women that are not colonies of gender. Additional possible topics to address include what constitutes a woman, whether there is such a thing as "women's literature", what constitutes a colonized society, the problem of classifying writers by sex, race, language, or geography, whether women can avoid speaking in anything but a "male voice", and what it means for a man to direct (or take) this class. This list is by no means exhaustive. Student will be expected to participate in class discussions, give a short presentation, and write a paper of 15-20 pages on a subject of their choice.
Works to be studied include Une si longue lettre de Mariama Bâ, Pluie et vent sur Télumée Miracle de Simone Schwartz-Bart, Georgette! de Farida Belghoul, L'amant de Marguerite Duras, Kamouraska d'Anne Hébert, and Lettre d'une Africaine à ses soeurs occidentales de Calixthe Beyala. Films will hopefully include Gazon maudit, Sans toit ni loi, Finzan and Le silence des palais. There will also be a coursepack with excerpts of literary and theoretical writings by Elisabeth Badinter, Simone de Beauvoir, Maryse Condé, Annie Ernaux, Luce Irigaray, Hélène Cixous, Annie Leclerc, Madelaine Gagnon and Denise Boucher, and Aminata Sow Fall.

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FREN 580 (Topics in Cultural Studies) Reading By Candlelight/Research on Early Modern Bestsellers
Pamela Cheek

This course asks how readers in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries experienced the practice of reading. We will read individual works not only for what they offer between their covers, but also for the controversies they generated, the discourses in which they participated and, in some cases, the cultural transformations they marked or inaugurated. The aim of the course is to familiarize you with a series of landmark early modern texts and with the culture that produced them while also allowing you to expand your repertoire of reading techniques.

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FREN 580 Le Discours Amoureux
Walter Putnam

"Le plus grand plaisir après l'amour, c'est d'en parler."
— Louise Labé

Nous proposons d'examiner l'évolution de l'amour romantique et romanesque en France à travers la lecture de quatre textes:
Choderlos de Laclos: Les Liaisons dangereuses
Gustave Flaubert: Madame Bovary
Marcel Proust: Un amour de Swann
Marguerite Duras: L'amant
Comment peut-on parler d'amour à l'aube du XXIème siècle? Qui en parle? Et à qui? Et pourquoi? Et comment? Le sujet a incite une multitude d'écrits, de chansons, de declarations et d'actes au cours des siècles. Nous étudierons de quelle manière l'amour s'est implanté au coeur de notre culture occidentale et française et comment la littérature s'en est accaparé pour en faire le "grand sujet" que nous connaissons.
En parallèle avec ces quatre romans devenus "classiques", nous lirons des etudes théoriques qui éclairent certains aspects du discours amoureux: Denis de Rougemont, René Girard, Niklas Luhmann, Roland Barthes, entre autres.

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FREN 580 Metaphors of Nation in the Algerian Novel
Raji Vallury

In this course, we will study the Algerian novel written in French from the 1950s up to the present. By analyzing the novels in the light of Algeria's colonial and post-colonial history, we will examine themes such as the literary construction of the nation, the complexity of the linguistic, political, and cultural ties between France and Algeria, and the relationship between Islam and the nation-state. We will also consider the question of gender and writing. The course specifically aims at understanding the unique role played by allegory and metaphor in the literary 'cartographies' of the nation and its 'body politic'. How can we explain the use and persistence of allegorical forms in post-colonial writing about the nation? Do allegory and symbol share a necessary and privileged relationship to the space, time and history of the nation? And how does metaphor render visible or make for the emergence of new forms of nation and community? These are some questions that we will address in our consideration of nine novels, which will be supplemented by readings in post-colonial theory.

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FREN 580 Zoophilosophy
Walter Putnam
See COMP 580 above.

FREN 584 Women Writers of the Late Enlightenment
Pamela Cheek

See COMP 580 above.

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FREN 588 (Topics in Genre Studies) Théâtre, spectacle, public aux 17ème et 18ème siècles
Pamela Cheek

Ce cours est un atelier pour l'exploration du théâtre institutionnalisé et populaire de l'ancien régime. Nous regarderons les monuments du théâtre classique et du théâtre des lumières en France, les grands débats et mouvements littéraires (les trois unités, l'invention du théâtre bourgeois, le mélodrame... ), et le spectacle populaire (de la farce du seizième siècle jusqu'à la fête révolutionnaire). Nous tracerons les liens entre la culture du spectacle et la consolidation du pouvoir royal, la formation d'un public indépendent conçu comme tel, et le développement de l'individu moderne défini par sa sensibilité, son sexe et sa nationalité. Dans le contexte d'un survol du théâtre de 1600 à 1800, l'atelier donnera lieu à la gestation de projets de recherche indépendents qui seront présentés dans les semaines finales du cours.

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FREN 588 Fairy Tales
Susanne Baackmann

See GRMN 550 below.

FREN 600 Rabelais: cours gargantuesque
Marina Peters-Newell

This course is an introduction to Rabelais' work, an examination of its medieval characteristics as well as its more progressive, some say "humanistic" traits. It examines the notion of man's relationship to the world, to society and to his own body in society.

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German

ARTH 582 | GRMN 580 | COMP 580 Reconfiguring the Subject—Building the Nation-State
Susanne Baackmann

The substantial contributions of German-speaking nations to modern art, literature, and philosophy are recognized around the world. Major thinkers such as Kant, Hegel, Marx, Freud, Benjamin, Adorno, and Habermas continue to influence our contemporary understanding of the relationship between the subject and the state, as well as between individuals and larger collectives. While key artists like C.D. Friedrich, the German Expressionists, the Berlin Dadaists, and the contemporary Düsseldorf School of Photography have explored this topic using different visual registers, authors like Goethe, Heine, Mann, Musil, Hesse, and Grass have transposed this into literary narratives.

Centered on the historical emergence and evolution of two key terms — the subject and the nation-state — this advanced seminar on German cultural history will focus on a series of case studies from 1800 to the present.

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GRMN 550 Väterliteratur: History as Text and Image (1945-1995)
Susanne Baackmann

In light of extensive controversies surrounding the commemoration of the end of WW II (May 8, 1945), we will examine how the "burden" of German history is negotiated in contemporary literature and film. The explosive question concerning the evaluation of 1945 — defeat or liberation? — leads to related issues of the "German national character" and its effect within Nazi ideology. The course will therefore also explore various cultural and socio-psychological concepts such as "nationalism," "Bildungsbürgertum," "honor," "authority," and "silent majority."

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GRMN 550 | COMP 580 | MLNG 580 | FREN 588 Fairy Tales
Susanne Baackmann

This seminar is centered on the genre and development of the fairy tale. We will look at a wide variety of texts and films, such as early oral tales from France and Italy, the collection of tales compiled by the brothers Grimm, tales by Hans Andersen and Oscar Wilde, contemporary fairy tales, feminist fairy tales, as well as recent film adaptations. This course provides a historical overview of the European fairy tale tradition, and investigate differences between the early oral tradition and the folk and wonder tale, the Romantic fairy tale, and more 'realistic' and socially critical versions of the 19th and 20th century.

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GRMN 552 The Enlightenment and the Education of the Modern Individual
Jason Wilby

The late eighteenth century in Germany is a period of fundamental transition. Many of these transitional moments emerge in literature and philosophy as conflicts: between the individual and the collective, between desires and moral obligations, between the will to do good and the desire to exist as a free and autonomous individual. Enlightenment notions of education offer a way of negotiating these conflicts and establishing a stable identity.
Adultery, suicide, homicide, infanticide and many other forms of social deviance are at the core of many of the works we will read. Because of this concern for the seamy side of life, the literature of this period provides what could be considered the first psychology of the modern individual; a psychology that is not only interesting to witness in its emergence during this period, but that continues to re-emerge and provides a unique point of view on contemporary social, cultural and political issues.

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GRMN 553 Literary Transpositions of German History as "Trauma"
Susanne Baackmann

This course explores the effects of the Holocaust within German postwar culture. In many ways this traumatic legacy has shaped German national identity. Like no other historical event, the Third Reich legacy continues to be denied, discussed, exposed, and transformed within public debates and literary representations, both nationally and internationally. The Holocaust and its changing effects within contemporary culture or, more specifically, the memory and/or denial of national guilt and trauma will be our main focus. We will read selected examples of post-war literature in order to understand if, how, and in what way the past keeps informing the present.

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GRMN 553 Die Goldenen Zwanziger? - Die Kultur und Literatur der Weimarer Republik
Katrin Schröter

Die zwanziger Jahre in Deutschland und vor allem in Berlin werden oft als "Die Goldenen Zwanziger" bezeichnet. Dieser Kurs wird versuchen diesem Mythos auf den Grund zu gehen, indem die Weimarer Repblik als eine Periode der Konfrontation auf verschiedenen Ebenen, wie z.B. der ökonomischen, politischen, literarischen, filmischen, künstlerischen und architektonischen untersucht wird. Dabei werden verschiedene Trends und Richtungen, wie z.B. "Neue Sachlichkeit" im Vordergrund stehen, sowie Bewegungen, die bereits vor der Weimarer Republik eine Rolle spielten, wie z.B. Expressionismus und Modernismus. Weitere Themenkreise, die in dem Kurs angesprochen werden, sind u.a. die Entwicklung der Großstadt Berlin, das Verhältnis zu den USA, Kulturpolitik der Nazis vor 1933, demokratische und sozialistische Utopien, Massenkultur und Moderne, Modernismus und Realismus.. Texte u.a. von Benjamin, Brecht, Döblin, Fleißer, Freud, Hesse, Kafka, Lukacs, Thomas Mann, Remarque.

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GRMN 553 Die Möglichkeit zu trauern – Kultur und Literatur der DDR
Katrin Schröter

In seinem Buch Jubelschreie, Trauergesänge konstatiert Günter de Bruyn: "Geschichte hat keinen Sinn, der wird ihr gegeben, und zwar immer einer, der den Wünschen für die Zukunft entspricht." Es geht in diesem Kurs insofern um Sinngebung, indem ein Bild der DDR erarbeitet werden soll, das zumindest im Ansatz die DDR in ihrer Komplexität zu erfassen sucht. Dabei geht es vor allem darum, die Uneinheitlichkeit des geeinten Deutschlands zu verstehen, indem deren Ursachen analysiert werden. Einerseits werden im Kurs Texte im Vordergrund stehen, die das Selbstverständnis der DDR ausdrücken. Andererseits wird sich der Kurs ebenfalls mit westlichen Modellen der Rezeption der DDR auseinandersetzen, die die DDR einerseits als Unrechtsstaat und andererseits als letzte Hoffnung einer linken Utopie verstehen. Die Frage Was bleibt? wird dabei im Vordergrund stehen.

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GRMN 553 Die Deutschen nach der Wende – Kultur und Literatur der Berliner Republik
Katrin Schröter

"Wir sind ein Volk, wir sind das Volk, ich bin Volker." Die Frage nach einer gesamtdeutschen Identität rückte nach der Vereinigung wieder in den Mittelpunkt. In diesem Kurs wird uns insbesondere der in vielen literarischen und filmischen Texten der 90er Jahre und des 21. Jahrhunderts thematisierte Widerspruch zwischen einem durch die Vereinigung neu entwickelten Nationalbewusstsein einerseits und einer stärker in den Vordergrung tretenden multikulturellen Sensibilität andererseits interessieren.
Wir werden untersuchen, auf welche Art und Weise aktuelle Texte die Problematik der nationalen Identität aufgreifen und wie sich das Verhältnis zwischen Deutschen (Ost) und Deutschen (West) seit dem Fall der Mauer entwickelt hat.
This course seeks to introduce students on the graduate level to major issues and debates in film theory of the past eighty years. The first part of the course will provide a structural framework for the analysis of visual narratives, and address questions of technique, narrativity, diegesis, and cinematic coding. We will then proceed to examine major developments in classical film theory, such as the relationship between the real and the image, and the evolution of a cinematic language. The major part of the course, however, will investigate post-classical theories of film that often focus on cinema as an ideological apparatus that produces a distinct subject effect. These approaches are informed by Althusserian marxism, Lacanian psychoanalysis, post-structuralism, semiotics, and feminist theory.

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GRMN 556 Gender and the Cultural Imagination
Susanne Baackmann

This seminar examines the significance of gender as a category that permeates culture, society, and science. Since the German term Geschlecht does not differentiate between biology (sex) and gender (culture), for a long time gender did not feature as a term of critical inquiry within the German–speaking world. However, the long-standing debates about gender within the Anglo-American context started to inspire similar debates in the eighties in Europe. Pivotal questions raised in this class concern gender as it inflects both constructions of subjectivity and identity marking gender as a cultural construct in the seventies. These questions change in the eighties to an inquiry into a "primary" or "original" essence of nature, gender, and identity. We will examine how meaning and representation are generated and maintained, which kind of asymmetries and hierarchies prop up the order of representation, and what kinds of social and political interests drive and shape this process.

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GRMN 556 Memories of Trauma and the Holocaust
Susanne Baackmann

This course explores the effects of the Holocaust within European and US postwar culture. The memory or denial of guilt and complicity will be our main focus. We will seek to understand the historical, cultural, and ideological framework that led up to the Holocaust, investigate the history of its execution (I), read expert accounts (II), and explore how the memory of these events are resurfacing within cinematic and literary representations and public discussion in Germany, France, and the US (III).

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GRMN 556 German Cinema: How German Can It Be?
Katrin Schröter

See COMP 580 above.

GRMN 580 Reconfiguring the Subject: Building the Nation-State
Susanne Baackmann

See ARTH 582 above.

GRMN 580 Zoophilosophy
Walter Putnam

See COMP 580 above.

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Modern Languages

MLNG 500 Language Acquisition Methods Course
Marina Peters-Newell

This course examines the process of second language acquisition, integrating both practical and theoretical strategies to enhance teaching, assessment, integration of culture, and other psycholinguistic aspects of SLA. (mandatory for all FLL TAs)

MLNG 580 Fairy Tales
Susanne Baackmann

See GRNM 550 above.

MLNG 580 Zoophilosophy
Walter Putnam

See COMP 580 above.

MLNG 580 German Cinema: How German Can It Be?
Katrin Schröter

See COMP 580 above.

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