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In postwar West Germany, a thorough examination of the Nazi past took a backseat to economic recovery and repairing the country’s international standing, whereas to some extent the reverse was true for the East. An authoritarian democracy, an emphasis on consumerism and the qualitatively different experiences of younger generations led them to question whether the Federal Republic was a restoration or a new beginning? In the East, the cold war led to an increasingly Stalinist interpretation of communist principles, while communist ideals were upheld as an antidote to Nazism and the new materialism. This tutorial will cover a wide range of social protest as reflected in literature and film of the two Germanies: critical responses to the Holocaust in the two countries, the 1968 student revolution, anti-capitalist terrorism by the Baader-Meinhof gang, the feminist and gay rights movements, reformers and repression under Ulbricht and Honecker in the GDR, minority rights and environmental activists. Authors will include: Peter Weiss, Die Ermittlung, Heinrich Böll, Und sagte kein einziges Wort, Gisela Elsner, Riesenzwerge, Emine Sevgi Özdamar, Das Leben ist eine Karawanserei, Volker Braun, Unvollendete Geschichte, Alice Schwarzer, Der kleine Unterschied und seine großen Folgen, Christian Kracht, Faserland, Thomas Brussig, Wasserfarben. Films may include: Gerhard Klein, “Berlin-Ecke Schönhauser,” Ulrich Plenzdorf, “Die Legende von Paul und Paula,” Rainer Werner Faßbinder, “Angst essen Seele auf,” Reinhard Hauff, “Messer im Kopf,” Uli Edel, “Der Baader- Meinhof Komplex,” Margarethe v. Trotta, “Das zweite Erwachen der Christa Klages,” Heiner Carow, “Coming Out,” Hans Weingartner, “Die fetten Jahre sind vorbei.”
Grading: no pass/fail option,
no fifth course option
GERM 202 or permission of the instructor
This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit: