Cultural Studies and Modern German History 1870-1945
COURSE DESCRIPTION: Over the last decade, methodological innovations have strongly influenced approaches to German history from 1870 through 1989. Subtitled “Cultural Studies and Modern German History,” this course will assess recent developments in the field. In the first half of the course, we will assess “manifestoes” and representative—article-length—examples of “cultural studies” approaches to German issues. In the second half of the course, we will investigate the impact of these new methods on recent publications in the field. By doing so, we will survey the major stages of modern German political, intellectual, and cultural history, and historiographical trends within the present job and publication market.
For the first half of the course, the following books are required reading . I have ordered them at Loyola University Bookstore and Beck’s Books. Assignments must be read before coming to each session.
Dietrich Orlow, A History of Modern Germany, 1871 to Present, 4th edition (Prentice Hall, 1998 ISBN 0139270965)
Rob Burns, ed., German Cultural Studies: An Introduction (Oxford University Press, 1995, ISBN 019871503X)
Scott Denham, ed., A User's Guide to German Cultural Studies (University of Michigan Press, 1997 ISBN 0472066560)
Russell Berman, Cultural Studies of Modern Germany: History, Representation, and Nationhood (University of Wisconsin Press, 1993, ISBN 0299140148)
Eva Kolinsky, ed., The Cambridge Companion to Modern German Culture (Cambridge University Press, 1999, ISBN 0521568706)
David Wetzel, ed., From the Berlin Museum to the Berlin Wall: Essays on the Cultural and Political History of Modern Germany (Greenwood, 1996, ISBN 0275954455)
For the second half of the course, I ask you to make a selection—in consultation with me— of at least two recent monographs on modern German history. In class presentations, and then in your term paper, you will assess the relevance of “cultural studies” approaches and methods to this recent literature in the field.
DISCUSSIONS: This course will consist of weekly discussion sessions. I will ask two or three of you to introduce sources for each discussion. These presentations will be prearranged during the first two sessions of the semester. Depending on course enrollment, you will be asked to initiate discussion in this way numerous times during the semester. Those not introducing materials are still responsible for reading them. General involvement in class discussions will determine your class participation grade.
BOOK REVIEWS: I ask that you produce two 5-page book reviews of the introductions to German cultural studies that we address. Book reviews should be completed a week after our discussions of the book.
REVIEW ESSAY: You will write a 15- to 20-page review essay assessing your selected monographs and their relationship to German cultural studies as a whole.
You are to complete this project in three stages:
1. By Tuesday, 2/22, you should select your monographs in consultation with me. Please submit a written committment to your topic.
2. On Tuesday, 4/11, I ask for a thematic outline of your review essay (typed). This must be more than a “topical” outline. It should include a fully developed thesis statement and subsequent entries should be in the form of full sentences.
3. The review essay is due on Friday, May 5, by 12:00pm.
GRADES: Grades will be determined according to the following scheme.
Class Participation 33%
Book Reviews 33%
Review Essay 33%
I will be available at Crown Center 513, on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11:30am to 12:30pm. My telephone number there is 508-2234. My home phone number is 944-5477 (before 9pm, please). My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
READING AND DISCUSSION SCHEDULE