German 221


G221: Introduction to German Literature 
of the 20th Century

The goal of German 221 is threefold:  the course will  introduce you to representative works of 20th century German literature; it will teach you how to read a literary or filmic text; and it will help you improve your writing skills in the German language.

I. The course is divided into 6 parts:

  1. Literature from the Turn of the Century and the Weimar Republic
  2. Literature during the Third Reich and Literature by Authors in Exile
  3. Literature after 1945
  4. Literature of the GDR
  5. Literature of the Sixties and Seventies
  6. Literature in the United Germany
In each of these six periods, we will be discussing selected texts with emphasis on student participation in the discussions based on the assigned readings.  In addition to the individual texts, there will be informal lectures on historical and socio-political contexts and oral presentations of students.

II. We will be discussing major theoretical movements in the way people have read literary texts in the German context.  We will discuss ways to approach a literary text and methods of interpretation.  You are supposed to get an overview over different ways to read a text and you will understand the philosophical and theoretical backgrounds of major critical trends in literature.

III.  In German 221 we will be working on your own interpretative and German writing skills.  You will be writing four essays during the course of the semester and work hard on improving your language skills and practice writing analytical essays in German.


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Page last modified: 10/29/03