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Literary Seminar: German-Jews and the Arts - Identity & Culture from 1780 to 1933

Germanic Languages And Literatures 528 - Fall 2020

This graduate seminar will examine the artistic and literary production of German-speaking Jews from the late-eighteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries. By studying a wide variety of primary "texts," including novels, visual art, music, drama and film, we will explore the critical role that Jews played in shaping German culture from the Enlightenment to the rise of National Socialism. Topics include dialogues between the German and Jewish Enlightenments, Salon culture and the development of meaningful contacts between Germans and Jews, the intersections of aesthetic discourse and antisemitism, the rise of Yiddish theater and the visual and acoustic language of the Jewish Renaissance. Moving beyond narratives of assimilation or acculturation, we will discuss the complex and shifting nature of German-Jewish subjectivities and investigate the entanglements of German, Austrian and Jewish culture through frameworks of difference, indifference, performance, and cultural transfer. Primary readings in German, discussion in English. Accommodations can be made for interested graduate students in other programs who do not read German at the graduate level. Please see instructor.
Course Attributes: EN H