The Department of German draws upon the expertise of the German faculty at both Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges to offer a broadly conceived German studies program, incorporating a variety of courses and major options. The purpose of the major in German and German studies is to lay the foundation for a critical understanding of German culture in its contemporary global context and its larger political, social, and intellectual history. To this end we encourage a thorough and comparative study of the German language and culture through its linguistic and literary history, systems of thought, institutions, political configurations, and arts and sciences.
The German program aims, by means of various methodological approaches to the study of another language, to foster critical thinking, expository writing skills, understanding of the diversity of culture(s), and the ability to respond creatively to the challenges posed by cultural difference in an increasingly global world. Course offerings are intended to serve both students with particular interests in German literature and literary theory and criticism, and those interested in studying German and German-speaking cultures from the perspective of communication arts, film, history, history of ideas, history of art and architecture, history of religion, institutions, linguistics, mass media, philosophy, politics, and urban anthropology and folklore.
A thorough knowledge of German is a goal for both major concentrations. The objective of our language instruction is to teach students communicative skills that enable them to function effectively in authentic conditions of language use and to speak and write in idiomatic German. A major component of all German courses is the examination of issues that underline the cosmopolitanism as well as the specificity and complexity of contemporary German culture. German majors can and are encouraged to take courses in interdisciplinary areas, such as comparative literature, film, gender and sexuality studies, growth and structure of cities, history, history of art, music, philosophy, and political science, where they read works of criticism in these areas in the original German. Courses relating to any aspect of German culture, history, and politics given in other departments can count toward requirements for the major or minor.
Didem Uca's, a German Major, short story written in German will be published in an upcoming issue of Trans-Lit2, the journal of the Society for Contemporary American Literature in German. Read more...
In March 2011, 18 students spent spring break in Vienna with
Professor Imke Meyer of the German Department and History of Art
Professor Christiane Hertel as part of the College’s 360° course “The Last Days of Habsburg: Vienna 1900 and the End of an Empire.”
Bi-Co News article
"Bryn Mawr 360 Class Takes on Vienna" written by Meghna Singh
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