Contacts | Program of Study | Program Requirements | Summary of Requirements: Literature and Culture Concentration | Summary of Requirements: Comparative Germanics Concentration | Summary of Requirements: Concentration in Germanic Studies and Allied Fields | Grading | Study Abroad | Foreign Language Proficiency Certificates | Placement Testing | Accreditation Testing | Minor Programs in Germanic Studies | Summary of Requirements: Minor in Business German | Minor Program in Norwegian Studies | Yiddish Studies | Minor Program in Yiddish Studies | Yiddish Program Internship | German Courses (Language) | Languages Across the Curriculum (LxC) | German Courses (Literature and Culture)

Department Website: http://german.uchicago.edu

Program of Study

The program for the BA degree in Germanic Studies is intended to provide students with a wide ranging and highly personalized introduction to the language, literature, and culture of German-speaking countries. 

Our program trains students to read closely, think critically, and develop historical perspective. Germanic Studies students gain strong communication skills and global literacy, learning how to engage with cultures different from their own. German thinkers, artists, and scientists helped shape the Western tradition, and Germany has been a major force within the European concert of powers. Today with the largest economy in Europe and the third largest in the world, Germany is the United States’ largest European trading partner. Our program provides students with the linguistic skills and cultural competency necessary to function in German-speaking countries and to succeed in a variety of private and professional contexts.

Students who elect to major in Germanic Studies choose one of three concentrations: (1) Literature and Culture, (2) Comparative Germanics, and (3) Germanic Studies and Allied Fields.

The department also offers two options for a minor in German: (1) Germanic Studies and (2) Business German, in addition to minors in Yiddish and Norwegian.

Program Requirements

Concentration in Literature and Culture

This concentration is designed for students who want to focus on the literary, philosophical, artistic, and cultural history of German-speaking countries, and hone their linguistic proficiency by doing upper-level work in German.

Prerequisite: Second-Year German

Requirements:

●      Three Third-Year German courses (GRMN 21XXX)

●      GRMN 22124 The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany

●      Three courses in literature or culture taken in German*

●      Three additional courses in German literature and culture**

●      Complete the Practical and/or Advanced Proficiency Assessment through the Office of Language Assessment 

* One may be a course with a Languages Across the Curriculum (LxC) session taught within the Department of Germanic Studies; one may be an additional third-year course.

** Two may be relevant Germanic Studies–oriented courses in other departments.

Concentration in Comparative Germanics

This concentration is designed for students who want reach intermediate to advanced proficiency in another Germanic language besides German (i.e., German and either Yiddish or Norwegian) and develop fluency with their cultures.

Requirements:

●      Second-Year German sequence (GRMN 20100-20201-20301 Deutsche Maerchen; Grünes Deutschland; Kunst und Kultur) or Intensive German sequence (GRMN 12001-12002-12003 Intensive German I-II-III)

●      Three courses in first-year Norwegian or Yiddish, or above

●      GRMN 22124 The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany

●      Three additional Germanic language, literature, and/or culture courses*

●      Complete the Practical and/or Advanced Proficiency Assessment through the Office of Language Assessment 

* One may be a relevant Germanic Studies–oriented course in another department.

Concentration in Germanic Studies and Allied Fields

This concentration combines German Studies with another discipline in a coherent program of study. The course of study is designed individually by the student with the Director of Undergraduate Studies (or departmental advisor) and must be approved by the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Prerequisite: Second-Year German 

Requirements:

●      Two Third-Year German courses (GRMN 21XXX)

●      GRMN 22124 The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany

●      A minimum of three courses in the Department of Germanic Studies (GRMN 211XX and above)

o   At least two courses must be taught in German (this may include one additional third-year-level language course) 

●      A maximum of four cognate courses in a related field such as Philosophy, History, Music, Cinema and Media Studies, Art History, Linguistics, Jewish Studies, Religious Studies, Political Science, etc. Students must demonstrate these courses have a significant German dimension and have them approved by the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

●      Complete the Practical and/or Advanced Proficiency Assessment through the Office of Language Assessment

Honors Track

Germanic Studies majors who wish to pursue a BA with honors must complete the following requirements in addition to the requirements for one of the three concentrations:

●      IRHU 20100 Introduction to Humanistic Inquiry and Research Design (Winter Quarter of second or third year); or, in exceptional cases, if students miss IRHU 20100, then IRHU 29600 Research Proposal Colloquium (Spring Quarter of third year).

●      GRMN 29900 Capstone Project (Autumn or Winter Quarter of fourth year)

●      Completion of Capstone Project

●      Have a major GPA of at least 3.5 and cumulative GPA of 3.3 at the time of graduation

Students interested in pursuing honors should take IRHU 20100 in the Winter Quarter of their third year. They should be in contact with the Director of Undergraduate Studies at the beginning of the Winter Quarter about their plans of pursuing honors, as they must file a petition with the Department of Germanic Studies by the first week of the Spring Quarter of their third year. With the help of the Director of Undergraduate Studies, students will then secure the consent of a Germanic Studies faculty member to serve as their adviser. Students’ Capstone Project proposals (minimum of five pages) must be approved by their advisers by the end of Spring Quarter. Students are expected to begin research for the Capstone Project during the summer between their third and fourth years. The department will assist them in obtaining support for their research over the summer if necessary.

Please note that completion of the Capstone Project does not, in itself, guarantee honors in the major. Honors are awarded by the College on the basis of a departmental nomination of exceptional Capstone Projects.

Details of the Capstone Project

The Capstone Project may consist of a BA Paper or a creative project. Examples of such projects include (but are not limited to) an original translation, a creative writing text, an app or a podcast, an online exhibit, a website, or a documentary film. For these undertakings, students need to have sufficient previous experience with the relevant medium (e.g., artistic, digital, etc.), either through previous course work or independent practice. For the Capstone Project, students will have the opportunity to pursue their own individual intellectual interests, cultivate new skills and modes of communication and presentation, and potentially engage wider audiences for their scholarship. Projects must demonstrate substantial engagement with German-language culture(s), including the use of German-language sources, and they must include a written summary and reflection (at least five to seven pages). The written component of the creative inquiry project must contain a clear statement on the issue or problem the student is tackling, and it must provide background information on the chosen field (e.g., other translations, alternative digital designs that exist, etc.). Furthermore, the written component must include a critical self-analysis of the undertaking, and it must reflect on methodologies employed and contributions to the chosen area of inquiry.

A BA Paper typically is a research paper of at least 25 pages. While the paper may be written in either English or German, it must include a bibliography that makes significant use of Germanic-language sources.

A first draft of the paper or the written reflection is due by Week 5 of Winter Quarter, and the completed Capstone Project must be submitted by Week 2 of Spring Quarter. Each student needs at least one adviser from within the Department of Germanic Studies.

Germanic Studies will accept a Capstone Project used to meet the BA requirement in another major, under the condition that original Germanic language sources are used. Students should consult with both chairs by the earliest BA proposal deadline. A consent form, to be signed by both chairs, is available from the College adviser. It must be completed and returned to the College adviser by the end of Autumn Quarter of the student's year of graduation.

Outstanding Capstone Projects are eligible for the department’s McKenzie Prize.

Summary of Requirements: Literature and Culture Concentration

Prerequisite: Second-Year German

Third-Year German: Any three of the following courses: **300
Erzaehlen
Gedicht
Philosophie
Film
Drama
Medien und Gesellschaft
Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World
Business German
The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar German100
The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany
Three courses in literature or culture taken in German 300
Three courses in German literature and culture §300
Total Units1000

Summary of Requirements: Comparative Germanics Concentration

Second-Year German: One of the following three-course sequences:*300
Deutsche Maerchen; Grünes Deutschland; Kunst und Kultur
Intensive German I-II-III
GRMN 22124The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany100
Three courses in first-year Norwegian or Yiddish, or above*300
Three additional Germanic language, literature, and/or culture courses, of which at least three must be literature and culture courses 300
Total Units1000

Summary of Requirements: Concentration in Germanic Studies and Allied Fields

Prerequisite: Second-Year German

Third-Year German: Any two of the following courses: **200
Erzaehlen
Drama und Film
Gedicht
Philosophie
Film
Drama
Medien und Gesellschaft
Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World
Business German
GRMN 22124The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany100
A minimum of three courses in the Department of Germanic Studies (211XX and above), two of which must be taught in German300
A maximum of four cognate courses in a related field such as Philosophy, History, Music, Cinema and Media Studies, Art History, Linguistics, Jewish Studies, Religious Studies, Political Science, etc. Students must demonstrate these courses have a significant German dimension and have them approved by the Director of Undergraduate Studies.400
Total Units1000

Grading

Students who are majoring in Germanic Studies must receive a quality grade in all courses taken to meet requirements in the major. Non-majors have the option of taking courses for Pass/Fail grading (except for language courses, which must be taken for quality grades). More than half of the requirements for the major must be met by registering for courses bearing University of Chicago course numbers.

Study Abroad

Studying abroad not only allows students to deepen their engagement with German culture and strengthen their linguistic abilities, but it can also be a personally and educationally transformative experience. From Berlin to Vienna, the College offers a range of exciting opportunities to go abroad. As early in their course of study as possible, interested students are encouraged to take advantage of one or more of these options:

1. The Vienna Program in Autumn Quarter, which includes three courses of European Civilization, as well as German language instruction on several levels.

• Autumn Vienna program: contact Eric Benjaminson, ebenjaminson@uchicago.edu and consult study-abroad.uchicago.edu/programs/vienna-western-civilization

• Students may count the Vienna Program’s European Civilization course towards the major or minor if they are not using it to meet the general education requirement.

• Students with advanced proficiency in German may also count the German language course taken in Vienna toward the major or minor, as the equivalent of a third-year language course.

2. The Vienna Program in Spring Quarter, which alternates between Music in Western Civilization and Jewish Civilization. Both of these programs include German language instruction on several levels.

• Spring Vienna program: contact Eric Benjaminson, ebenjaminson@uchicago.edu and consult study-abroad.uchicago.edu/vienna-music-western-civilization and study-abroad.uchicago.edu/vienna-jewish-civilization

Students may count the Vienna Program’s Music and Jewish Civilization courses towards the major or minor if they are not using them to meet the general education requirement.

• Students with advanced proficiency in German may also count the German language course taken in Vienna toward the major or minor, as the equivalent of a third-year language course.

3. The College also co-sponsors, with the Berlin Consortium for German Studies, a yearlong program at the Freie Universität Berlin. Students register for regular classes at the Freie Universität and/or at other Berlin universities. To be eligible, students must have completed the second year of German language courses or an equivalent and should have completed all general education requirements.

• Berlin Consortium: contact Elana Kranz, ekranz@uchicago.edu and consult study-abroad.uchicago.edu/programs/berlin-freie-universität-berlin

4. Third-year majors can apply for a Romberg Summer Research Grant to do preparatory work for the Capstone Project.

• Send your application, a two-page, single-spaced description of your research project, and a budget description, to the Director of Undergraduate Studies by March 1.

5. Students who wish to do a summer study abroad program can apply for a Foreign Language Acquisition Grant (FLAG) that is administered by the College and provides support for a minimum of eight weeks of study at a recognized summer program abroad. Students must have completed GRMN 10300 Elementary German For Beginners-3 or its equivalent to be eligible for FLAG support for the study of German. For more information, visit study-abroad.uchicago.edu/sitg.

• FLAG program: consult study-abroad.uchicago.edu/programs/foreign-language-acquisition-grant-flag. Please contact Maeve Hooper at hooperm@uchicago.edu for information on dates and costs of summer language programs in Germany and Austria.

6. DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) Programs

DAAD German Studies Research Grant: Supports third- or fourth-year students seeking a one-to-two-month research experience in Germany

DAAD Research Internships in Science and Engineering (RISE): Offers a stipend of 650 Euros per month for up to three months to conduct research in Germany over the summer

DAAD Undergraduate Scholarship: Supports second- and third-year students who wish to study and conduct research in Germany for four to ten months

DAAD University Summer Course Grant: Summer courses at German universities to help build your language skills while studying anything from film to politics to engineering

UA7 Study and Internship Program (SIP) in Germany: Provides support for study at a German university, followed by an internship (including applied science research)

For these and other opportunities, details, and updates, visit ccrf.uchicago.edu/scholarships-and-fellowships/daad-german-academic-exchange-programs or contact Arthur Salvo at aksalvo@uchicago.edu.

More than half of the requirements for the major must be met by registering for courses bearing University of Chicago course numbers.

Foreign Language Proficiency Certificates

Majors in Germanic Studies are required to complete one of the College’s Language Proficiency Assessments (Practical or Advanced). These examinations are offered every Autumn and Spring Quarter. Students who successfully pass a University of Chicago oral and written proficiency test will receive a certificate of proficiency in a foreign language and will have this proficiency noted on their transcripts.

Students are eligible to take the Practical examination after completing the second year of the German language sequence; students are eligible to take the Advanced examination after they have completed courses beyond the second year of language study and subsequently have spent a minimum of one quarter abroad in an approved program. FLAG students are also eligible. For more information, please contact the Director of the German Language Program, Maeve Hooper, at hooperm@uchicago.edu and consult languageassessment.uchicago.edu.

Placement Testing

The German Placement Test is offered online to students registered at the University. Students may only take the Placement Test once. A score on the test does not confer credit, rather, it provides students with an entry point into the German language program. For questions or issues regarding placement, please contact the Director of the German Language Program, Maeve Hooper, hooperm@uchicago.edu.

Accreditation Testing

For issues regarding accreditation, please contact the Director of the German Language Program, Maeve Hooper, hooperm@uchicago.edu.

Minor Programs in Germanic Studies

Minor in Germanic Studies

The Minor in Germanic Studies is designed for students who wish to reach advanced language proficiency in German and deepen their knowledge and understanding of German culture and literature.

Courses in the minor (1) may not be double counted with the student’s major(s) or with other minors and (2) may not be counted toward general education requirements. Courses in the minor must be taken for quality grades, and more than half of the requirements for the minor must be met by registering for courses bearing University of Chicago course numbers.

Prerequisite:

Second-Year German: One of the following three-course sequences:

●      GRMN 12001-12002-12003 Intensive German I-II-III

●      GRMN 20100-20201-20301 Deutsche Maerchen; Grünes Deutschland; Kunst und Kultur

Requirements:

●      Three Third-Year German courses (GRMN 21XXX)

●      GRMN 22124 The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany

●      Two courses in German literature and culture, one of which must be taught in German

Minor in Business German

The new Minor in Business German will teach students not only the linguistic proficiency but also the cultural literacy necessary to succeed in a German business environment. Cultural context matters in communication, and it is important for students to understand the history, literature, and social codes of native speakers of German in order to function successfully in a variety of professional and private situations.

Courses in the minor (1) may not be double counted with the student’s major(s) or with other minors and (2) may not be counted toward general education requirements. Courses in the minor must be taken for quality grades, and more than half of the requirements for the minor must be met by registering for courses bearing University of Chicago course numbers.

Prerequisite:

Second-Year German: One of the following three-course sequences:

●      GRMN 12001-12002-12003 Intensive German I-II-III

●      GRMN 20100-20201-20301 Deutsche Maerchen; Grünes Deutschland; Kunst und Kultur

Requirements:

1. For students NOT majoring in Economics/Business Economics:

●      GRMN 21803 Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World

●      GRMN 21903 Business German

●     ECON 10000 Principles of Microeconomics and ECON 10200 Principles of Macroeconomics

●      GRMN 22124 The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany

●      One upper-level German course taught in German*

2. For students majoring in Economics/Business Economics:

●      GRMN 21803 Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World

●      GRMN 21903 Business German

●      GRMN 22124 The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany

●      Three additional upper-level courses within the Department of Germanic Studies (of which at least one course must be taught in German)*

*This may be a seminar, an additional third-year-level course, or may be fulfilled through an internship abroad + GRMN 21204 German in Practice. For this course, in addition to pursuing an internship, students will write three substantive reports, in German, on their internship experience and make an oral presentation on the experience in an upper-level Business German course.

Summary of Requirements: Germanic Studies Minor

Prerequisite: Second-Year German three-course sequence

Third-Year German: Any three of the following courses: 300
Erzaehlen
Gedicht
Philosophie
Film
Drama
Medien und Gesellschaft
Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World
GRMN 22124The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany100
Two courses in German literature and culture *200
Total Units600

Summary of Requirements: Minor in Business German

Prerequisite: Second-Year German three-course sequence

For students NOT majoring in Economics/Business Economics:
GRMN 21803Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World100
GRMN 21903Business German100
ECON 10000Principles of Microeconomics100
ECON 10200Principles of Macroeconomics100
GRMN 22124The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany100
One upper-level German course taught in German *100
Total Units600
For students majoring in Economics/Business Economics
GRMN 21803Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World100
GRMN 21903Business German100
GRMN 22124The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany100
Three additional upper-level courses within the Germanic Studies Department (of which at least one course must be taught in German) *300
Total Units600

Minor Program in Norwegian Studies

See the Norwegian Studies page in this catalog for program requirements and courses for the minor in Norwegian Studies.

Yiddish Studies

Students may enroll in the beginning language sequence (YDDH 10100-10200-10300 Elementary Yiddish for Beginners I-II-III) as well as the intermediate sequence (YDDH 20100 Intermediate Yiddish I and YDDH 20200 Intermediate Yiddish II: Archival Skills). There are opportunities for independent study for students whose Yiddish is above the intermediate level. Courses in Yiddish literature taught in English are offered biannually through the Department of Germanic Studies and may also be available in the Department of Comparative Literature. Courses in Yiddish may also be applied to the major or minor in Jewish Studies. Students interested in pursuing these degrees should consult Nancy Pardee (npardee@uchicago.edu). Students who study in the Yiddish program may be eligible for funding for supplemental Yiddish language study in the summers or for internships.

Undergraduates are eligible to apply for the Vladimir and Pearl Heifetz Memorial Fellowship and the Vivian Lefsky Hort Memorial Fellowship (for East European Jewish literature), and the Joseph Kremen Memorial Fellowship (for East European Jewish Arts, Music, and Theater) at the YIVO institute for Jewish Research. These are two–three-month in-residence (in New York) research grants: www.yivo.org/List-of-Fellowships. Furthermore, the Greenberg Center for Jewish Studies offers undergraduate summer research grants: ccjs.uchicago.edu/undergraduate-summer-research-grants.

For further information on the Yiddish program and on opportunities, please contact Jessica Kirzane, Lecturer in Yiddish, jkirzane@uchicago.edu.

Minor Program in Yiddish Studies

See the Yiddish Studies page in this catalog for program requirements and courses for the minor in Yiddish Studies.

Yiddish Program Internship

Career Advancement and the Greenberg Center co-sponsor an undergraduate intern from the University of Chicago to work for In geveb: A Journal of Yiddish Studies.

German Courses (Language)

FIRST-YEAR SEQUENCE

GRMN 10100-10200-10300. Elementary German for Beginners I-II-III.

This sequence develops proficiency in reading, writing, listening, and speaking for use in everyday communication. Knowledge and awareness of the different cultures of the German speaking countries is also a goal.

GRMN 10100. Elementary German For Beginners-1. 100 Units.

This sequence develops proficiency in reading, writing, listening, and speaking for use in everyday communication. Knowledge and awareness of the different cultures of the German speaking countries is also a goal. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for quality grade.

Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for quality grade.

GRMN 10200. Elementary German For Beginners-2. 100 Units.

Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): GRMN 10100 or placement
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for quality grade.

GRMN 10300. Elementary German For Beginners-3. 100 Units.

This sequence develops proficiency in reading, writing, listening, and speaking for use in everyday communication. Knowledge and awareness of the different cultures of the German speaking countries is also a goal.Prerequisite(s): GRMN 10200 or 10201, or placement. No auditors permitted. Must be taken for quality grade.

Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): GRMN 10200 or 10201, or placement
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for quality grade.

GRMN 10123. Summer Intensive Introductory German. 300 Units.

Summer Introductory German is a 7-week course designed for students wishing to develop intermediate proficiency in reading, writing, listening and speaking for use in everyday communication. Students will work with authentic materials as well as gain familiarity with the different cultures of the German-speaking countries. The course meets Monday through Thursday for three hours per day, with additional 90-minute meeting times in the afternoon. Summer Introductory German is the equivalent of the 10100-10200-10300 sequence offered during the regular academic year at the University of Chicago and satisfies the university competency requirement. During Summer 2020, this course will be offered online and it will be adjusted accordingly.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Summer

GRMN 10201. Elementary German 2. 100 Units.

This is an accelerated version of the GRMN 10100-10200 sequence intended for students with previous knowledge of the language. Prerequisite(s): Placement or consent of language coordinator.No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade.

Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter
Prerequisite(s): Placement or consent of language coordinator
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade.

GRMN 12001-12002-12003. Intensive German I-II-III.

This intensive, three-quarter sequence brings students to high-intermediate levels in all four skills: reading, writing, speaking, and listening so that students can enter third-year level courses in German. Learners who are starting German late in their College careers or who wish to move forward swiftly will gain skills corresponding to two full years of study. NOTE: Each course is 200 units and corresponds in workload to taking two courses.

GRMN 12001. Intensive German I. 200 Units.

This intensive, three-quarter sequence brings students to high-intermediate levels in all four skills: reading, writing, speaking, and listening so that students can enter third-year level courses in German. Learners who are starting German late in their College careers or who wish to move forward swiftly will gain skills corresponding to two full years of study. NOTE: Each course is 200 units and corresponds in workload to taking two courses.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 12002. Intensive German II. 200 Units.

This intensive, three-quarter sequence brings students to high-intermediate levels in all four skills: reading, writing, speaking, and listening so that students can enter third-year level courses in German. Learners who are starting German late in their College careers or who wish to move forward swiftly will gain skills corresponding to two full years of study. NOTE: Each course is 200 units and corresponds in workload to taking two courses.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 12003. Intensive German III. 200 Units.

This intensive, three-quarter sequence brings students to high-intermediate levels in all four skills: reading, writing, speaking, and listening so that students can enter third-year level courses in German. Learners who are starting German late in their College careers or who wish to move forward swiftly will gain skills corresponding to two full years of study. NOTE: Each course is 200 units and corresponds in workload to taking two courses.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 13100. Reading German. 100 Units.

This course prepares students to read a variety of German texts. By the end of the quarter, students should have a fundamental knowledge of German grammar and a basic vocabulary. While the course does not teach conversational German, the basic elements of pronunciation are introduced.

Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Prior knowledge of German not required. No auditors permitted. This course does not prepare students for the competency exam. Must be taken for a quality grade.

SECOND-YEAR SEQUENCE

GRMN 20100-20201-20301. Deutsche Maerchen; Grünes Deutschland; Kunst und Kultur.

Second-Year Sequence

GRMN 20100. Deutsche Maerchen. 100 Units.

This intermediate course moves students with German-language competency towards a content-based seminar in German. Class time is devoted to discussion of assigned reading in German and a review and expansion of basic German grammar. Assigned reading is primarily fairy tales written by the Brothers Grimm, some well known like "Little Red Riding Hood" and some less well known, like "Frau Holle." We will identify and discuss the most common structural elements of fairy tales, such as character types and plot elements, in order to compare the fairy tales. We will cover two modern adaptations of Grimms' fairy tales to explore the political and social commentary fairy tales can provide. We will use these two adaptations from 1971 and 1996 to discuss class conflict and immigration, respectively. Finally, we read excerpts of a novella from the Romantic era to explore how fairy tale elements are used beyond the genre usually associated with children. Students complete writing assignments in German beginning with a paragraph and ending with a 1-page analytic essay and a 2-page fairy tale of their own creation. A system of drafts and regular grammar assignments help students to identify and correct their errors, improving language acuity. While students may satisfy the college language requirement with just an examination, this course is an important step in our content-based German language program at UChicago and study abroad opportunities.

Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter
Prerequisite(s): GRMN 10300 or placement using the online language assessment Canvas site.
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade. Please contact Prof. Hooper at hooperm@uchicago.edu with questions.

GRMN 20201. Grünes Deutschland. 100 Units.

Over the past three decades Germany has become a global leader in environmentalism and sustainability practices. This course develops students' proficiency in all four skills (speaking, listening, reading, writing) and reviews basic grammar while exploring various aspects of "Green Germany," from recycling and transportation to renewable energies (die Energiewende) to the history of the green movement. We investigate environmental practices and attitudes in German-speaking countries while comparing them with those in the US and other countries. In doing so, we consider whether environmental practices in German-speaking countries represent positive and feasible models for other countries. Students work with authentic and current materials (articles, websites, videos) and pursue a variety of independent projects (research, creative), including a final project on how to make the university campus more sustainable.

Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter
Prerequisite(s): Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20100 or placement exam
Equivalent Course(s): CEGU 20201

GRMN 20301. Kunst und Kultur. 100 Units.

This course is designed to provide students with the tools to analyze and discuss works of art in their historical and cultural contexts, and to prepare them for more advanced coursework in German. Though the syllabus may differ based on the instructor, the course typically includes units on film, short fiction, poetry, and the visual arts. Driving questions include the role of art in society and politics, the construction of German identity through art, and the relationship between art and history. By the end of the quarter, students will have improved their reading, writing, speaking, and listening abilities, and will have solidified their understanding of select grammatical concepts.

Instructor(s): Maeve Hooper     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Prerequisite: GRMN 20201 or placement exam.

THIRD-YEAR SEQUENCE

GRMN 21103-21303-21403. Erzählen; Gedichte; Philosophie.

It is not necessary to take these courses in sequence. These courses serve as preparation for seminar-style classes. Students work with a variety of texts and learn to present and participate in instructor- and student-led discussions of relevant issues and topics. Student also write short essays and longer research papers. Work in grammar, structure, and vocabulary moves students toward more idiomatic use of German.

GRMN 21103. Erzaehlen. 100 Units.

It is not necessary to take these courses in sequence, but three of the four courses are required for the major. These courses serve as preparation for seminar-style classes. Students work with a variety of texts and learn to present and participate in instructor- and student-led discussions of relevant issues and topics. Student also write short essays and longer research papers. Work in grammar, structure, and vocabulary moves students toward more idiomatic use of German. This course develops advanced German skills through the study of narratives of various authors from different periods. Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20300 or placement Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade.

Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20300 or placement
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade.

GRMN 21303. Gedicht. 100 Units.

This course develops advanced German skills through the study of poetry of various authors from different periods.

Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20300 or placement
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade.

GRMN 21403. Philosophie. 100 Units.

This course develops advanced German skills through the study of philosophical texts of various authors from different periods.

Terms Offered: Spring. Offered in even-numbered years.
Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20300 or placement
Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade.

GRMN 21503. Film. 100 Units.

In Winter 2023, two sections will be taught by Prof. Burgoyne. Film: Alltag und Verbrechen in Ostdeutschland Nine films, the first of which from 1932 and the last of which from 2012 will serve as the material with which we examine changing methods of documentary and dramatic film. We will spend two sessions on each film, the first of which focused on the historical background of the decade in question and the second of which on discussing filmic technique. The requisite vocabulary for film analysis in German will be introduced in order to discuss various types of shots and sequences. We will analyze the methods by which filmic technique may be used to convey social criticism and the ideals of Socialism. Our focus on East German cinema and the DEFA company will theoretically ground our discussion of realism and Socialist Realism in film. The themes of "daily life" in the GDR will be juxtaposed with "crimes" such as those of the Second World War, alternative lifestyles, Republikflucht, and sedition, to name a few. All discussion, reading, and assignments in German.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: TBD Winter

GRMN 21603. Drama. 100 Units.

This course develops advanced German skill through the study of dramas and/or films of various authors/directors from different eras.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 21703. Medien und Gesellschaft. 100 Units.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 21803. Arbeitskulturen: Trends in the German-Speaking Working World. 100 Units.

In this course we explore contemporary issues in German culture and society through the lens of working life. We examine the issues surrounding the notoriously high taxes that workers pay in German-speaking countries and the social services that these taxes fund, including socialized health care, unemployment insurance, and pensions. After a brief introduction to the post-war history of the democratic socialism as a governmental type in German-speaking countries, students will explore the issues surrounding working life by reading texts from online newspapers, journals, social media and other sources. Students will also practice listening skills using a variety of streaming media: newscasts, talk shows, comedy shows, and narrative television series. In our examinations and discussions of these materials, we will focus not only on the issues surrounding working life itself, but especially the balance that arises in regards to such personal choices as holidays, hobbies, and family choices. The American corporate world will be our primary basis of comparison. We will also review the current political landscape in German-speaking Europe to contextualize the existing cultural norms. Students will choose the topic and reading for the final week of class. Assignments for this course are designed to practice skills such as effective digital communication, presenting one's professional biography and opinion, as well as interviewing strategies. All readings & assignments in German.

Instructor(s): Nicole Burgoyne     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Prerequisite(s): GRMN 20300 or 20301 or placement using the online language assessment Canvas site.
Note(s): Note(s): No auditors permitted. Must be taken for a quality grade. Please contact Prof. Burgoyne at burgoyne@uchicago.edu with questions.

Languages Across the Curriculum (LxC)

LxC courses have two possible formats: (1) an additional course meeting during which students read and discuss authentic source material and primary texts in German; or (2) a course in another discipline (such as history) that is taught entirely in German. Prerequisite German language skills depend on the course format and content. LxC courses maintain or improve students’ German language skills while giving them a unique and broadened perspective into the regular course content.

German Courses (Literature and Culture)

Students who are majoring or minoring in German and take courses taught in English are expected to do the majority of their course work in German. In such cases, students must work out with the instructor a reasonable set of assignments based on German-language texts.

GRMN 21204. German in Practice. 100 Units.

Internship in a German-speaking country. Students will write three substantive reports, in German, on their internship experience; and may be asked an oral presentation on the experience in GRMN 21803 Arbeitskulturen or GRMN21903 Business German."

Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 21903. Business German. 100 Units.

Students in this course acquire the language knowledge, skills and abilities that they will need to succeed in a German-language business environment. Students practice all four skills - speaking, listening, reading and writing - as they gain mastery of the various types, genres and contexts of German business communications.

Terms Offered: TBD

GRMN 22124. The Cultural History and Politics of Postwar Germany. 100 Units.

The premier demand upon all education is that Auschwitz not happen again," announced the critic Theodor Adorno on German radio in 1966. By this he meant not only the education of children, but also the re-education of the German people. After World War II, with the Third Reich in ruins and confronted with the horrors of the Holocaust, Germans were forced to reckon with their past as they attempted to build the country anew, entering into a period of dramatic political and cultural reorientation. This course traces the history of "rebuilding" Germany after 1945, from the immediate postwar period through the East/West division to reunification to today. Drawing on a broad range of source material, including film, literature, government documents, art, and architecture, this interdisciplinary seminar studies the limits and possibilities of conceiving of Germany as a post-war Wirtschaftswunder (economic miracle), and its implications for German cultural production. We will pay special attention to the way that debates from the postwar era still reverberate today, for instance in racial discrimination and the rise of the German far-right. This course is required for all Germanic Studies majors and minors. Readings and discussion in English.

Instructor(s): Sophie Salvo     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): DEMS 22124

GRMN 22311. Berlin: Conflict, Community, and Sustainability. 100 Units.

Berlin: What makes a city? Who decides how a city grows and changes, and what criteria do they use - should it be beautiful, efficient, sustainable, open, just? How do economic systems and political ideologies shape urban development? What is the "right to the city," and what does it mean for city-dwellers to exercise it? These are just some of the questions we will seek to answer in our course, Berlin: Conflict, Community, and Sustainability. This is a September Term study abroad course. The program includes a side trip over a long weekend to the cities of Hamburg and Lübeck.

Instructor(s): Evan Carver     Terms Offered: Summer
Prerequisite(s): Admission to Berlin: Conflict, Community, and Sustainability study abroad program.
Note(s): Study Abroad September Term AY 23-24
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 22311, CEGU 22311

GRMN 23325. Adaptation Laboratory: Berlin at Court Theatre. 100 Units.

This course, supported by the Franke Institute's Center for Disciplinary Innovation and team-taught by Mickle Maher, award winning playwright, and David Levin, offers students an intensive, behind the scenes introduction to the preparation of Berlin, a world-premiere production at Court Theatre, the University's Tony-Award winning professional theater. Students are invited to experience the production's preparation from start to finish, that is, from the very first rehearsal near the beginning of the quarter, through preview performances at mid-term, to its premiere near the course's conclusion. In addition to extensive conversations with the creative team, we will consider the production's source materials (especially Jason Lutes' graphic novel Berlin), its interpretive stakes, as well as the exigencies of preparing a world-premiere. Open to advanced UG's, MA students, as well as PhD students

Instructor(s): David Levin     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): GRMN 33325

GRMN 23623. Evil: Myth, Symbol and Reality. 100 Units.

From the horrors of the Shoah to violence suffered by individuals, the question of the origin, meaning, and reality of evil done by humans has vexed thinkers throughout the ages. This seminar is an inquiry into the problem of evil on three registers of reflection: myth, symbol, and reality. We will be exploring important philosophical, Jewish, and Christian texts. These include Martin Buber, Good and Evil, Hannah Arendt, Eichmann in Jerusalem, Immanuel Kant, Religion within the Limits of Reason Alone, Paul Ricoeur, The Symbolism of Evil, Edward Farley, Good and Evil, Hans Jonas, Mortality and Morality and Claudia Card, The Atrocity Paradigm. There will also be a viewing of the movie Seven (1995) directed by David Fincher and written by Andrew Kevin Walker. Accordingly, the seminar probes the reality of evil and the symbolic and mythic resources of religious traditions to articulate the meaning and origin of human evil. The question of "theodicy" is then not the primary focus given the seminar's inquiry into the fact and reality of human evil. Each student will submit a 5-7 page critical review of either Jonathan Glover's Humanity: A Moral History of the 20th Century or Susan Neiman's, Evil in Modern Thought. Each Student also will write a 15 page (double spaced;12pt font) paper on one or more of the texts read in the course with respect to her or his own research interests.

Instructor(s): William Schweiker     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): This course meets the HS or CS Committee distribution requirement for Divinity students.
Equivalent Course(s): THEO 33600, RETH 33600, RLST 23600, GRMN 33623, FNDL 23600, JWSC 23600

GRMN 23683. What is Nature? - 20th-Century Continental Philosophy. 100 Units.

In this course, we follow the topic of the meaning of nature in philosophy, beginning our exploration right around the point when explicit discussion of nature becomes less prominent. We intend to develop a coherent narrative about major philosophical developments from Nietzsche through Derrida through the lens offered by this question, examining existentialism, phenomenology, and deconstruction along the way. Students should come away from this course with a grounded sense of what each term means, resulting in foundational knowledge of Continental philosophy after Nietzsche. We will take an interdisciplinary approach, as the question of nature often emerges for our authors in engagement with art, whether drama, poetry, or painting, all of which will be addressed. This course's starting point for our reflections on nature is Nietzsche's notion of the death of God, a theme to which we will return with all three of our main authors, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Derrida. Recurrent themes will be: nature and eros, nature and human finitude, the human being as (un)natural, and the very viability of the concept of nature. Additional authors include Aristotle, Plato, Sappho, Sophocles, Friedrich Hölderlin, Leo Strauss, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, and Judith Butler, and discuss paintings by Paul Cézanne and Vincent van Gogh. An interesting question to pose along the way will be the relationship (or lack thereof) between the views of nature on offer to our ecological concerns today.

Instructor(s): Mat Messerschmidt      Terms Offered: Winter. Winter 2024
Equivalent Course(s): SCTH 30683, SCTH 20683, RLST 23503

GRMN 24425. Metropolis Berlin. 100 Units.

Berlin, with its fractured histories, has been a crucible for artists, poets, filmmakers, and cultural critics to engage with thinking about the city. The period of the Weimar Republic (1918-1933) has often been described with the metaphor of "dancing on the volcano." What does this term, suggestive of freedom, experimentation, but also impending doom, mean? With Berlin's unprecedented expansion in the nineteenth- century and early twentieth centuries, distinctive new modes of perception and experience connected to the metropolis gave shape to experimental literary works. Cultural critics such as Georg Simmel and Walter Benjamin examined the impact of cities on the psyches and bodies of their inhabitants. And new media such as film captured the realities of urban life in stunning detail (as in Ruttmann's Symphony of a City), while painting attempted to depict the convulsive movements of the city.

Instructor(s): Catriona MacLeod     Terms Offered: Winter

GRMN 24524. The Illustrated Book. 100 Units.

Kafka prohibited images of Gregor Samsa. In a 1915 letter to his publisher, he stipulated that the insect should not be drawn, not even to be seen from a distance. Why? Along with Henry James, Mallarmé, and others, Kafka seemed to fear that illustration would diminish the power of the text to "illustrate" or illuminate in its own way, as Hillis Miller has put it. The study of illustration has, however, emerged as a new interdisciplinary field in recent years, though illustration has often been neglected as an ornamental "handmaiden" to the printed word or as a commercial appendage to the book. This seminar will approach the topic with a focus on the heyday of the illustrated book, the nineteenth century, from the perspectives of book history, literary criticism, art history, word and image studies, and translation and adaptation studies. Topics to be considered to include: paratextuality; illustration as translation and/or adaptation; extra-illustration; illustration and authorship; text-image interactions or non-interactions; illustration and mass production; photography and illustration.

Instructor(s): Catriona Macleod     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): GRMN 34524, ARTH 34524, ARTH 24524

GRMN 24635. Means, Motive, Murder: German Crime Fiction. 100 Units.

Edgar Allan Poe, when accused of being too much under the influence of German literary sources, claimed that: "if in many of my productions terror has been the thesis, I maintain that terror is not of Germany, but of the soul." In this course, we will read a selection of German crime fiction not only to be in a better position to judge Poe's protestations, but more importantly, to familiarize ourselves with a selection of canonical German writers as well as with the history and the characteristics of the genre. Why is crime fiction one of the most popular literary genres today? How does the German tradition differ from well-known whodunnits such as those by Arthur Conan Doyle or Agatha Christie? What is the relationship between the genre and society? We will consider - among other questions - the figure of the detective, the history of policing, different concepts of justice and guilt, the status of clues, indices, evidence. Readings will include Poe, E.T.A. Hoffmann, Kleist, Schiller, Droste-Hülshoff, and others. Readings and discussions in English.

Instructor(s): Margareta Ingrid Christian     Terms Offered: Autumn

GRMN 25120. Nietzsche: Culture, Critique, Self-Transcendence. 100 Units.

This course is conceived as a pathway to the Humanities and an introduction to the work of Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900). A range of Nietzsche's work will be considered, but the focus will be on three themes to which Nietzsche recurred throughout his writing career: Culture: Nietzsche's thought on the anthropological roots and the expressive forms of human meaning-making: Apollo/Dionysus; Gesture; Music; Metaphor Critique: the vacuous character of modern culture; romanticism, decadence, nihilism. Self-Transcendence: individual self-realization and freedom. The selection of these themes is motivated by the fact that they may be considered as fundamental dimensions of humanistic inquiry. Students will develop a sound understanding of a writer whose intellectual influence continues to grow, but at the same time they will become acquainted with such core concepts of humanistic/interpretive inquiry as form, expression, ideology, genealogy, discourse, self-fashioning, individuality, and value.

Instructor(s): David Wellbery     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): SIGN 26013, FNDL 25121

GRMN 26225. Get Cultured in Nine Weeks: Historical Perspectives on Art and Education. 100 Units.

Get Cultured in Nine Weeks: Historical Perspectives on Art and Education: What does it mean to 'get cultured'? Why-and how-do we do it? Does an education in the arts and letters make us more moral, more intelligent, more resistant to authority-or perhaps more submissive? These questions are at the center of debates about the place of cultural learning in the contemporary world, but our century was not the first to think critically about the social and political functions of this form of education. This course investigates how students, educators, writers, and artists conceptualized the aims and means of becoming cultured from the 1700s forward, focusing on European history and connecting it to the concerns of the present. We will pay particularly close attention to both formal and informal means of cultural education, and to the ways in which these practices have been understood to produce social structures of class, gender, and race. Readings will draw from the fields of history, literature, philosophy, sociology, and art history. At the end of the quarter, students will be asked to design their own fantasy syllabus for "getting cultured in nine weeks."

Instructor(s): Sophie Salvo and Alice Goff     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 32510, GRMN 36225, HIST 22510

GRMN 26525. German Social and Cultural Theory. 100 Units.

In this course, we will read the major German social and cultural theorists of the twentieth century, among them Georg Simmel, Siegfried Kracauer, Walter Benjamin, Theodor Adorno, Max Horkheimer, Hannah Arendt, Herbert Marcuse, Jürgen Habermas, Niklas Luhmann. Readings will be available in both English and German, discussions will be in English.

Instructor(s): Eric Santner     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): GRMN 36525

GRMN 26725. Staging Richard Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung in the 21st Century. 100 Units.

This team-taught course explores the challenges of staging Richard Wagner's sprawling 19th-century tetralogy The Ring of the Nibelung in the 21st century. The course will offer an introduction to The Ring, including its complicated place in history (including its reception and production history), and how it has been thought about in recent musicology and critical theory. But first and foremost, we will be exploring how the piece is being staged today. To that end, we will explore four productions of the tetralogy that are currently being prepared at leading opera houses around the world - in Munich, London, Berlin, and Oslo - speaking, via Zoom, with artistic directors and the production teams about their ideas and ambitions. What are the interpretive challenges and opportunities in staging this mammoth work? How do these productions seek to engage the tetralogy's exceedingly complicated aesthetic ambitions, political baggage, and production history? And how do specific geographical, cultural, and historical conditions affect the artistic project of each production? Our discussions will encompass a range of fields, approaches, and topics. Among the themes we plan to examine are the aspiration to aesthetic totalization, the politics of community, the relationship between canonicity and critique, the notion of distress or emergency (the German term is Not), and some astonishingly lurid fantasies of family life-mostly of family dissolution. Moreover, we will approach the questi

Instructor(s): David Levin, Hedda Høgåsen-Hallesby     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): TAPS 26518, MUSI 26725, MUSI 36725, GRMN 36725, TAPS 36518

GRMN 28872. Jews in Nazi Germany: Lion Feuchtwanger's novel The Oppermanns in historical context. 100 Units.

Recently republished in 2022, Lion Feuchtwanger's 1933 best-seller The Oppermanns depicts a Jewish family who grapple with the Nazi seizure of power in Germany. Like many at the time, the Oppemanns think that the regime will be short-lived, but Feuchtwanger's prescient novel anticipates the entrenchment of Nazi power and the creeping curtailment of Jewish life in Germany with uncanny accuracy-from the thugs attacking individuals to the Ministry of Propaganda's demonization of Jewish Germans in mass media, via the enforced "Aryanization" of businesses required to employ non-Jewish managers. Discussion will focus on Feuchtwanger's nuanced portrayal of the distinct ways in which family members react to these assaults, supplemented by historical texts, including the analysis of Nazi language (1946) by Victor Klemperer, a Jewish-German survivor, and documents in the Weimar Republic Sourcebook.

Instructor(s): Loren Kruger     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Required: Complete HUM core
Equivalent Course(s): ENGL 28872, CMLT 28872, JWSC 28872, FNDL 28872

GRMN 29700. Reading and Research Course in German. 100 Units.

No description available. Prerequisite(s): Consent of instructor and director of undergraduate studies Note(s): Students must consult with the instructor by the eighth week of the preceding quarter to determine the subject of the course and the work to be done. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form.

Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Consent of instructor and director of undergraduate studies
Note(s): Students must consult with the instructor by the eighth week of the preceding quarter to determine the subject of the course and the work to be done. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form.

GRMN 29900. Capstone Project. 100 Units.

A culminating senior project. This can be either a traditional BA Paper, or a project of creative inquiry.

Terms Offered: Autumn Spring Winter
Prerequisite(s): Fourth-year standing. Consent of instructor and director of undergraduate studies.
Note(s): Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form.


Contacts

Undergraduate Primary Contact

Director of Undergraduate Studies
Sophie Salvo
WB 117
773.834.3969
Email

Secondary Contact

Director of Germanic Language Program; Senior Lecturer in Germanic Studies
Maeve Hooper
Cobb 502
773.834.7184
Email

Senior Lecturer

Senior Lecturer in Norwegian
Kimberly Kenny
Classics 415

Email

Instructor

Assistant Instructional Professor in Yiddish
Jessica Kirzane
Cobb 501

Email

Administrative Contact

Department Administrator
Emily Anderson
CL 25F
773.702.8494
Email