Yep, it’s that time again, Germanophiles and Russianists! Time to leap into the spring semester, just like these Olympic snowboarders:
If you didn’t make the cut for Sochi and it looks like you won’t be going to Pyeongchang, either, never fear: we have plenty of classes that will allow you to flex your (mental) muscles. Read on for the complete list of learning opportunities the German and Russian department is offering this semester.
FYS YYY 100 “Russia at WAR” CRN 20004–Professor Clark
In this FYS, students will read, watch, and listen to contemporary Russian-language books, movies, and songs about the conflicts in Afghanistan, Chechnya, and the Donbass, and speak with Russian, Chechen, and Western veterans-turned-authors of these conflicts. Throughout the course we will contemplate important questions such as: what are the differences and similarities in these different soldiers’ experiences? What are the effects of a conscript vs. a volunteer army vs. mercenary forces? What are the short- and long-term effects on society of these long-running, asymmetrical conflicts?
RUS 111 “Elementary Russian 1st Semester” CRN 22367–Professor Hamilton
Why take an off-cycle 111 class? Professor Hamilton explains why:
GER 112 “Elementary German 2nd Semester” CRN 15534 and 18749–Professor Knight
Taken German 111 and looking to keep making progress? Professor Knight will be offering two sections of GER 112 this semester, so there’s no reason not to find time for it in your schedule!
RUS 112 “Elementary Russian 2nd Semester” CRN 10743–Professor Clark
Took RUS 111 in the fall (or last year) and now you’re ready to go Faster, Higher, Stronger? RUS 112 is just right for you!
GER 113 “Intensive Elementary German” CRN 16883–Professor Wiggers
Have you been meaning to take German but didn’t get around to signing up for GER 111 in the fall? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Cover an entire year’s worth of German with Professor Wiggers in GER 113.
GER 153 “Intermediate German” CRN 10692–Professor Boyer
Ready to take your German to the next level? Sign up for Professor Boyer’s GER 153. Here’s what she has to say about it:
I am teaching German 153 this semester which provides an overview of the grammar everyone learned in 111 and 112. But the exciting thing about the course for me is that we get to read a mini-novel called “Gefährlicher Einkauf” a crime mystery. I am also looking forward to sharing various weird and quirky German short movies throughout the semester.
GER 210 “Encounters with the German-Speaking World” CRN 13521–Professor Howards
Want to expand your knowledge of the German-speaking world? Take GER 210 with Professor Howards, where you’ll find out about the political history of the German Democratic Republic, as well as daily life: were bananas really impossible to buy? Did kids really get sent away from home at the age of six to start training for the Olympics? And who is this guy?
RUS 210 “Russians and Their World” CRN 24075–Professor Shaw
If you’ve never been to Russia and/or would like to know something about everyday life there, check out Prof. Shaw’s RUS 210 course, The Russians’ World. It’s a little bit of history, a little bit of pop culture and a good introduction to what the Russians are all about. Readings are in Russian and you’ll be sure to get your vocab vitamins, too! Plus there’s Cheburashka!
GER 212 “Introduction to German Short Fiction” CRN 16523–Professor Boyer
In 212 we are getting serious this semester. Not only are we covering subjunctive and passive but we will be reading an entire novel. The course is centered on Anti-Semitism and the book is called “Es geschah im Nachbarhaus.” It is set in a small German town in the early twentieth century, where a child is found murdered and an innocent Jewish family suddenly find themselves accused of the crime. It’s based on real events and shows the difficult and painful history of Anti-Semitism in Germany.
RUS 317 “Seminar in Russian Literature” CRN 24076–Professor Shaw
Prof. Shaw will also be teaching RUS 317, Seminar in Russian Literature, where you’ll learn a little about 19th-century sexual tensions, the habits of evil pawnbrokers, what to do if you’ve suddenly got a talking dog on your hands and much, much more! Readings and discussions are по-русски.
GER 318 “German Conversation” CRN 13543–Professor Wiggers
By the end of this course students will be able to converse in German on a variety of topics that include both everyday aspects of the language (e.g. traveling, holidays, food and restaurants) as well as more specific topics (environment, German universities, immigrants in Germany). Special attention is given to broadening students’ vocabulary and is reinforced through vocab quizzes. Students will also be able to speak in German for longer periods of time (presentations, free speaking). Another emphasis in this course is listening comprehension through exposure to various sources (German news and short documentaries on Deutsche Welle, German songs). Another important component of German 318 is strengthening German pronunciation and enhancing fluency.
The course covers some very interesting topics, such as The German Basic Law (Germany’s equivalent to a Constitution), the environment and environmental problems, people with migration background living in Germany, and What is happiness for Germans?
GER 321 “German Culture and Civilization II” CRN 24072–Professor Knight
Really want to give your German-speaking and German-reading muscles a workout? Check out Professor Knight’s GER 321! The course is taught in German, and we’ll be covering German literature and culture from 1750 to the present day.
GES 331 “Weimar Germany” CRN 24073–Professor Thomas
Curious to know more about Weimar Germany? Check out Professor Thomas’s GES 331, where you will learn about the art, literature, music, and film of Weimar Germany, 1919-1933, in historical context. Taught in English.
GES 340 “German Masterworks in Translation” CRN 2297–Professor Thomas
Discover the literary riches of the German-speaking world! GES 340 examines selected works of German, Austrian, and Swiss fiction in English translation by such writers as Goethe, Schiller, Kafka, Mann, and Schnitzler.
RUS 340 “Seminar in Translation” CRN 24077–Professor Hamilton
This class is always a good time for advanced Russian students! Here’s Professor Hamilton’s description of it:
GES 395 “Special Topics in German Studies–Luther” CRN 24074–Professor McAllister
This course will focus on early Luther and his 3 main writings: “Babylonian Captivity,” “To Christian Nobility of German Nations,” and “The Freedom of the Christian.” We will also look at his writings on translation and his anti-Semitic views, and read some literature from that time period and examine art work by Albrecht Dürer and Lucas Cranach.
GER 399 “Seminar in the Major–German Comedy”–Professor McAllister
Professor McAllister tells us that the fun thing about this topic as that German comedies are usually not all that funny, but rather somewhat tragic and/or grotesque. All the 18th and early 19th comedies are pretty traditional (and include a resolution of conflict along with the punishment of the antagonist). Beginning with Kleist questionable resolutions and satire take hold and finally after 1945 it seems only tragic comedy is possible.