German Studies (GMAN)

* GMAN 110a, Elementary German IStaff

A beginning content- and task-based course that focuses on the acquisition of spoken and written communication skills, as well as on the development of cultural awareness and of foundations in grammar and vocabulary. Topics such as school, family life, and housing. Course materials include a variety of authentic readings, a feature film, and shorter video clips. Tutors are available for extra help. To be followed by GMAN 120. Enrollment limited to 14 per section. Students must preregister through Preference Selection during the online preregistration period. Details and a link to Preference Selection are provided on the German department Web site at http://german.yale.edu.  L11½ Course cr
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GMAN 120a, Elementary German IIStaff

Continuation of GMAN 110. A content- and task-based course that focuses on the acquisition of communicative competence in speaking and writing and on the development of strong cultural awareness. Topics such as multiculturalism, food, childhood, and travel; units on Switzerland and Austria. Course materials include a variety of authentic readings, a feature film, and shorter video clips. Tutors are available for extra help. To be followed by GMAN 130. Enrollment limited to 14 per section. Students must preregister through Preference Selection during the online preregistration period. Details and a link to Preference Selection are provided on the German department Web site at http://german.yale.edu.  L21½ Course cr
MTWThF 10:30am-11:20am

GMAN 125a, Intensive German ILieselotte Sippel

Intensive training in speaking, reading, writing, and comprehending the language. Focus on the mastery of formal grammar. For beginning students of superior linguistic ability.  L1, L22 Course cr
MTWThF 9:25am-11:15am

GMAN 130a, Intermediate German IStaff

Builds on and expands knowledge acquired in GMAN 120. A content- and task-based course that helps students improve their oral and written linguistic skills and their cultural awareness through a variety of materials related to German literature, culture, history, and politics. Course materials include authentic readings, a feature film, and shorter video clips. Tutors are available for extra help. After GMAN 120 or according to placement examination. Followed by GMAN 140. Enrollment limited to 14 per section. Students must preregister through Preference Selection during the online preregistration period. Details and a link to Preference Selection are provided on the German department Web site at http://german.yale.edu.  L31½ Course cr
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GMAN 140a, Intermediate German IIMarion Gehlker

Builds on and expands knowledge acquired in GMAN 130. A content- and task-based course that helps students improve their oral and written linguistic skills and their cultural awareness through a variety of materials related to German literature, culture, history, and politics. Course materials include authentic readings, a feature film, and shorter video clips. Tutors are available for extra help. After GMAN 130 or according to placement examination. Normally followed by GMAN 150 or, with permission of the director of undergraduate studies, by GMAN 171. Enrollment limited to 14 per section. Students must preregister through Preference Selection during the online preregistration period. Details and a link to Preference Selection are provided on the German department Web site at http://german.yale.edu.  L41½ Course cr
MTWThF 10:30am-11:20am

* GMAN 152a, Advanced German, Contemporary GermanyTheresa Schenker

An advanced language and culture course focusing on contemporary Germany. Analysis and discussion of current events in Germany and Europe through the lens of German media, including newspapers, books, TV, film radio, and modern electronic media formats. Focus on oral and written production to achieve advanced linguistic skills. After GMAN 140 or 145. For entering students with a score of 5 on the German Advanced Placement test, or according to results of the placement examination. Students must preregister through Preference Selection during the online preregistration period. Details and a link to Preference Selection are provided on the German department Web site at http://german.yale.edu.  L5, HU
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

* GMAN 162a, Pre-1945 German Culture and HistoryMarion Gehlker

An advanced language course focusing on improving upper-level written and oral language skills through the discussion of selected aspects of pre-1945 German culture, politics, and history in literary and nonliterary texts, films, and the arts. Topics include the Kaiserreich, the Weimar Republic, Expressionist art and film, youth movements, social democracy, and Nazi Germany. Emphasis on vocabulary building through frequent oral and written assignments. After GMAN 140, 145, or 150, or with permission of instructor.  L5, HU
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

* GMAN 178a, Genre and Identity in German LiteratureStaff

This course is designed as an introductory German literature course with an emphasis on foundational modern German literary texts. Students have the opportunity to explore a variety of textual genres, while they acquire the analytical tools necessary to understand, analyze, and discuss literary text of different types. The idea is to develop an understanding of genre—the question of the text’s identity—alongside an understanding of the “German” identities developed in and throughout these texts. Different concepts of “Germany,” “Germanness,” and identities that negotiate various ways of *Not* Being German raise the question of what it means to be, speak, or to identify as “German,” and what role literature can play in approaching—and criticizing—the question. Prerequisite: L4 German ability.  L5, HU
TTh 2:30pm-3:45pm

GMAN 209a / FILM 209a, Classics of German Cinema: From Haunted Screen to HyperrealityFatima Naqvi

This course introduces students to German films of the Weimar, Nazi, post-war and post-wall period. In exploring issues of class, gender, nation, migration, and conflict by means of close analysis, the course seeks to sensitize students to the cultural context of these films and the changing socio-political and historical climates in which they arose. Special attention is paid to the issue of film style. We also reflect on what constitutes the “canon” when discussing films, especially those of recent vintage. Directors include Robert Wiene, F.W. Murnau, Fritz Lang, Lotte Reiniger, Leni Riefenstahl, Alexander Kluge, Volker Schlöndorff, Werner Herzog, Wim Wenders, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Andreas Dresen, Christian Petzold, Jessica Hausner, Michael Haneke, Angela Schanelec, Barbara Albert.  Taught in English.  HU
MW 9am-10:15am

GMAN 214a / FREN 270a / LITR 284a, Mad PoetsStaff

A lecture course introducing undergraduates to the rich tradition of poetry written in French (and German) during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Each week is devoted to exploring the life and work of a poet whose ways of behaving, creating, and perceiving the world might be described as insane. There is, perhaps, no shortage of mad poets, but those whose life and work provide topics for discussion here include Hölderlin, Nerval, Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Verlaine, Mallarmé, Lautréamont, Apollinaire, Breton, Artaud, and Celan. Students become familiar with the tools required to read, interpret, understand, and enjoy poetry, and develop an understanding of the poems’ broader literary historical, philosophical, and political significance. Regular references are made to other modes of expression, including painting, photography, film, music, dance, philosophy, theater, and architecture.  Lectures in English. Sections in English or French. Readings available both in original language and in English translation.  WR, HU0 Course cr
MW 1:30pm-2:20pm

* GMAN 227b / HUMS 330b / LITR 330b / PHIL 402b, Heidegger's Being and TimeMartin Hagglund

Systematic, chapter by chapter study of Heidegger’s Being and Time, arguably the most important work of philosophy in the twentieth-century. All major themes addressed in detail, with particular emphasis on care, time, death, and the meaning of being.  HU
W 1:30pm-3:20pm

* GMAN 277b / HUMS 248b / LITR 447b / THST 277b, I and Thou – Dialogue and Miscommunication in Theory and LiteratureShira Miron and Rudiger Campe

Dialogue constitutes an integral part of human experience and culture ever since antiquity. Whether as a rhetorical or a dramatic device, written or oral, fictional or not – dialogue substantiates the core of any intersubjective communication, building bridges between the self and the Other while maintaining them as two separate entities. This seminar explores the form and function of dialogue through a wide range of theoretical and literary texts, focusing on a set of social, hermeneutical, poetical, and political questions. Specific attention is given to literary cases of failed dialogues and miscomprehension, aiming at the unique ability of the literary text to draw our attention beyond the limits of human communication and language. Readings include texts by Plato, Schlegel, Novalis, Bachtin, Levinas, Buber, Gadamer, Parsons, Kleist, Beckett, Melville, Schnitzler, Celan, Bachmann,, and others.  HU
M 1:30pm-3:20pm

* GMAN 278a / HUMS 195a / LITR 129a, Thinking Literature in German ModernismStaff

Ever since literature left its ancillary position in the service of extraneous creeds, ideologies and educational purposes or, in the eyes of some, became their substitute, it had to rethink itself. Reflections about its own raison d’être and how it relates to the world politically, philosophically, and emotionally became a primary substratum of literary modernism. This is particularly true for modernism in German language contexts where some of the major theories about literature originated and where philosophy, politics and literature had been closely intertwined for centuries. Following general reflections on the term Modernism and its variations in different linguistic and national contexts (Die Moderne, la modernité, modernismo) as well as its relation to Realism, to the Avant Garde and to Postmodernism, this course explores some of the major works of German Modernism. Among the texts to be discussed are works by Hugo von Hofmannsthal, Rainer Maria Rilke, Hermann Hesse, Thomas Mann, Else Lasker-Schüler, Franz Kafka as well as selected poetry and short prose by authors ranging from Expressionists to poets writing in the immediate aftermath of WWII. Special attention is given to intertextual references to the literary tradition and, in this context, to the self-reflexive dimension of the modernist writings.  HU
W 3:30pm-5:20pm

* GMAN 288a / HUMS 480a / LITR 482a / PHIL 469a, The Mortality of the Soul: From Aristotle to HeideggerMartin Hagglund

This course explores fundamental philosophical questions of the relation between matter and form, life and spirit, necessity and freedom, by proceeding from Aristotle's analysis of the soul in De Anima and his notion of practical agency in the Nicomachean Ethics. We study Aristotle in conjunction with seminal works by contemporary neo-Aristotelian philosophers (Korsgaard, Nussbaum, Brague, and McDowell). We in turn pursue the implications of Aristotle's notion of life by engaging with contemporary philosophical discussions of death that take their point of departure in Epicurus (Nagel, Williams, Scheffler). We conclude by analyzing Heidegger's notion of constitutive mortality, in order to make explicit what is implicit in the form of the soul in Aristotle.   HU
W 1:30pm-3:20pm

* GMAN 300a / HUMS 276a / LITR 414a / SOCY 301a, Non-Cynical Social ThoughtPaul North

Living together is difficult. How do some people do it? How can we do it less badly, or much better, or in the very best way? In this seminar we read sources from several disciplines that describe positive modes of conviviance. Much social thought is cynical, starting from where we are not and mapping why we haven't gotten there. Some social thought is revolutionary, looking for an exit, casting hopes toward the future. What both of these lack is contents. Without ignoring the massive difficulties involved, we try to fill this in with images of viable and livable groups, collectives, festivals, syndicates, congregations, planets.   HU
M 3:30pm-6:30pm

* GMAN 328a / THST 323a, Adapting to the StageStaff

In this course, we explore theatre as a site of adaptation, as intermedial constellation. We investigate the relationship between dramatic literature and its performance and performability, between textual outlines and their realization(s): between scripts and stages. Focusing on ‘adaptations’ in their various forms, allows us to explore the history of modern German theatre (1750-present day) from a particular angle. The perspective encourages us to prioritize actors over the writers/directors, it requires us to focus on the margins of a script: paratexts—a stage direction, for example—rather than their ‘literary’ counterparts. With this shift of focus and radical widening of the perspective, the course aims to bring forth minor voices within the canons of German drama literature and to offer a way to engage creatively and in unexpected ways with the canons of our field.  HUTr
W 3:30pm-5:20pm

* GMAN 329a / JDST 348a / PHIL 466a, German Idealism and ReligionPaul Franks and Robert Stern

The philosophies of Kant and his German Idealist successors address a number of central questions in the philosophy of religion and also presuppose a religious background in their approaches to questions of general metaphysics, epistemology and ethics. In this course, we explore the relevant religious context―both in works of Erasmus and Luther and also in the writings of the kabbalists of Safed, Christian kabbalah, and Jakob Boehme. We then read major works by Kant, Hegel and Schelling against that background. Other authors include Conway, Herrera, Jacobi, Kierkegaard, Lessing and Mendelssohn. Issues considered include freedom of the will and determinism, pantheism and panentheism, infinity and finitude, knowledge and faith, love and law, commandment and antinomianism, love of God and love of neighbor. Some prior study of Kant and German Idealism is recommended.  WR, HU
W 9:25am-11:15am

* GMAN 379a / FILM 325a / LITR 374a, German Cinema 1918–1933Jan Hagens

The years between 1918 and 1933 are the Golden Age of German film. In its development from Expressionism to Social Realism, this German cinema produced works of great variety, many of them in the international avantgarde. This introductory seminar gives an overview of the silent movies and sound films made during the Weimar Republic and situate them in their artistic, cultural, social, and political context between WWI and WWII, between the Kaiser’s German Empire and the Nazis’ Third Reich. Further objectives include: familiarizing students with basic categories of film studies and film analysis; showing how these films have shaped the history and the language of film; discussing topic-oriented and methodological issues such as: film genres (horror film, film noir, science fiction, street film, documentary film); set design, camera work, acting styles; narration in film; avantgarde cinema; the advent and use of sound in film; Realism versus Expressionism; film and popular mythology; melodrama; representation of women; modern urban life as spectacle; film and politics. Directors studied include: Grune, Lang, Lubitsch, Murnau, Pabst, Richter, Ruttmann, Sagan, von Sternberg, Wiene, et al.
   WR, HU
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

* GMAN 391a / HUMS 391a / JDST 280a / LITR 125a / RLST 374a, The Bible in German-Jewish Modernist LiteratureStaff

Biblical references in modernist literary works illustrate literature’s potential to transform ancient forms and conceptions into driving forces of renewal. This renewal concerns both literature and the Bible. Their encounter in modernist texts rarely occurs in a straightforward fashion. While the modernist literary reception of Biblical material occasionally does appear as pious affirmation or outright rejection, more characteristically, it alters, displaces, or distorts the original Scriptures. Not only do these transformations enact modernism’s basic injunction to “make it new,” but they also illuminate its complex relationship to tradition as such. The course explores this dynamic in the work of major German-Jewish modernists such as Franz Kafka, Else Lasker-Schüler and Paul Celan. None.  HU
Th 9:25am-11:15am

* GMAN 492a, The Senior Essay TutorialStaff

Preparation of an original essay under the direction of a faculty adviser.
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