Germany's Stories Past&Present
In this course, we will explore various social issues in German-speaking Europe as they are portrayed and discussed in major media outlets. The first part of this class provides students with historical and cultural background information beginning in the post-World War II era, with a special emphasis on nuanced depictions of perpetration and suffering. In the second part of the class we will focus on how shifting discourses of guilt, victimhood and memory continue to shape perceptions of cultural and national identity in Germany and Austria today. Within this context, we will examine topics related to migration (including expulsion of ethnic Germans and migrant labor movements), debates on multiculturalism, changing gender roles, political extremism, national identity and soccer, and the role of German military forces abroad, with a particular emphasis on Afghanistan. This course aims at developing advanced literacy abilities of summarizing, interpreting, and presenting substantial arguments in professional and academic settings. The instructor will provide all required texts.