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Courses Fall 2021

Elementary & Intermediate German Language Courses

 

GERMN 101: Elementary German I (3 hours, 3 credits)

For beginners with no previous knowledge of German; course description below.

 

GERMN 102: Elementary German II (3 hours, 3 credits)

Course description below.

 

GERMN 103: Intensive Elementary German (6 hours, 6 credits)

For beginners with no previous knowledge of German; course description below.

 

GERMN 201: Intermediate German I (3 hours, 3 credits)
Prereq: GERMN 102 or 103 or equivalent

Course description below.

 

GERMN 202: Intermediate German II (3 hours, 3 credits)
Prereq: GERMN 201 or equivalent

Course description below.

 


 

Advanced German Language, Literature and Culture Courses: Level I
(What is the difference between Level I and Level II courses?)

 

GERMN 301: Advanced German Comprehension & Conversation (3 hours, 3 credits)
Prereq: GERMN 202 or 203 or equivalent.

Course description below. Fulfills GER 3/A.

 

GERMN 322: German Civilization (3 hours, 3 credits)
Prereq: GERMN 202 or 203 or equivalent.

Course description below. Fulfills GER 3/A and Pluralism & Diversity Group D.

 

GERMN 327: Modern Swiss Literature (3 hours, 3 credits)
Prereq: GERMN 202 or 203 or equivalent.

Course description below. Fullfils GER 3/A and Pluralism & Diversity Group D.

 

Advanced German Language, Literature and Culture Courses: Level II

 

GERMN 34600: German Literature of the 1930s and 1940s (3 hours, 3 credits)
Prereq: One course numbered from GERMN 320 to 359 or equivalent.

Course description below. Fulfills GER 3/A and Pluralism & Diversity Group D.

 


Courses in German Literature & Civilization (Conducted in English)

 

GERMN 241: German Fairy Tales (3 hours, 3 credits)
Pre- or Coreq: ENGL 120.

Fulfills the "Creative Expression" category of the Hunter core or GER 2/C.
Fulfills Pluralism & Diversity Group D. Writing Intensive.

Course description below.

 

Course Descriptions

Elementary & Intermediate German Language Courses

GERMN 101:  Elementary German I  3hrs, 3crs.

No pre-req

This course is for beginners without prior knowledge of German. It focuses on the basic linguistic and cultural abilities needed to function in German-speaking countries. The instructor will emphasize active student participation (speaking, listening, reading, writing). Regular attendance and daily homework are necessary to succeed in this course.
Exam format: written quizzes, midterm and final exams
Textbook: Access to German, Jägerbuch, Vol 1. ISBN 9781524996246

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 102:  Elementary German II  3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: GERMN 101 or equivalent.

This course continues the work of GERMN 101. It broadens linguistic and cultural abilities for basic communication in a German-speaking environment. The instructor will emphasize active student participation (speaking, listening, reading, writing). Regular attendance and daily homework are necessary to succeed in this course.
Exam format: written quizzes, midterm and final exams
Textbook: Access to German, Jägerbuch, Vol 2. ISBN 9781524996253.  

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 103:  Intensive Elementary German  6hrs, 6crs.

No pre-req

This course is for beginners without prior knowledge of German. It covers in ONE semester the material normally covered in two semesters, in GERMN 101-102. It focuses on the basic linguistic and cultural abilities needed to function in German-speaking countries. The instructor will emphasize active student participation (speaking, listening, reading, writing). Regular attendance and daily homework are necessary to succeed in this course.
Exam format: written quizzes, midterm and final exams
Textbook: Access to German, Jägerbuch, Vol 1. ISBN 9781524996246 AND Access to German, Jägerbuch, Vol 2. ISBN 9781524996253

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 201:  Intermediate German I  3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: GERMN 102 or 103 or equivalent.

This course is the third in a four-semester sequence and continues the linguistic and cultural introduction to German. Review and practice of elementary grammar; introduction of advanced forms. Reading and discussion of selected texts. The instructor will emphasize active student participation (speaking, listening, reading, writing). Regular attendance and daily homework are necessary to succeed in this course.
Exam format: written quizzes, midterm and final exams
Textbook: Access to German, Jägerbuch, Vol 3. ISBN 9780201814224

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 202:  Intermediate German II  3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: GERMN 201 or equivalent.

Continued broadening of abilities in speaking, listening, reading, writing. Reading and discussion of selected literary texts. Strong emphasis on active student participation. Regular attendance and daily homework are important elements in this course. Completion of this course fulfills the Hunter College foreign language requirement. Students at this level will normally be tested by both written and oral examination.
Exam format: written quizzes, midterm and final exams
Textbook: Access to German, Jägerbuch, Vol 3. ISBN 9780201814224

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

Advanced German Language, Literature & Culture Courses

What is the difference between Level I and Level II advanced courses?

The advanced German courses are divided into two levels.  We expect students to take at least two literature courses at Level I before proceeding to Level II.  If you are in any doubt as to which course you should take, or if you have previous knowledge of German, please consult the chair of the department.

Level I courses are intended for students who have recently completed GERMN 202 or 203 and who have only limited experience discussing German literature in German, orally and in writing. They are not intended for native speakers.

Level II courses are intended for advanced students who have taken a number of 300-level German language and literature courses and who may be interested in going on to use the German language professionally. They are thus meant to help students move to the highest levels of the undergraduate program and beyond.

 

GERMN 301:  Advanced German Comprehension & Conversation  3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: GERMN 202 or 203 or equivalent.

This course is designed to develop conversational and compositional skills.  There will be intensive practice in contemporary spoken and written German with emphasis on vocabulary and idiom, and on active mastery of grammatical forms.  Audio-visual material will be used to strengthen comprehension skills.  Regular preparation in writing is required for group work and class dialogues. The course prepares students to take the (optional) B1 examination, the professional certificate of basic language competence administered by the Goethe Institute.

Course requirements: Active preparation and participation, written homework, oral presentations and written essays, group projects

Exam format: group project

Textbooks: This is a ZERO cost course. The e-textbook, authored by Dr. Zimmerman, is provided free of cost. iPads will be on loan to the students for use during the semester to access the e-book.

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 322: German Civilization 3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: GERMN 202 or 203 or equivalent.

This class will be taught synchronously and students are expected to attend with their microphones and cameras turned on. Both devices need to work properly.

Did you know that the German nation is relatively young compared to other European nations, even younger than the United States? Did you know that the German language did not have much reputation before Martin Luther translated the bible into German in the 15th century? Did you know that there were widespread migrations in Europe that involved Germanic tribes among others during most of the 1000 years AD? We will explore these questions and many more.

This class will deal with key topics in history, culture, and politics as they have shaped the Germans and Germany over time. Although we will start our survey with Germanic tribes entering into history, we will concentrate on those historical and cultural events that are generally known to present-day Germans. We will read a number of short texts from various historical periods touching upon court culture of the Middle ages, such as the “Song of the Nibelungs” (1200). We will move on to the Renaissance and Reformation (1300-1600) in literature, art and politics leading to the 17th century that was impacted heavily by the 30-year war (1618-1648) playing out mostly on German lands. Grimmelshausen described its cruelties in the most popular piece of literature of that time, “Simplicius Simplicissimus”. We will be reading excerpts of it. We will move on to the enlightenment, the philosopher Immanuel Kant as well as the literary titans of world reputation Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Friedrich Schiller. The last 150 years have seen the creation of the German nation (1871) with an emperor at its helm and the first German democratic experiment after WWI, the “Weimar Republic” (1919-1933). Under the Nazi dictatorship (1933-1945), Germany started WWII (1939-1945) and was responsible for the Holocaust. Since 1945, Germany has not been involved in any wars. However, the Berlin Wall was built in 1961 and fell in 1989 leading to the reunification of Germany in 1990. We will look at how these developments have shaped German in the 21st century.

Students will be given scanned documents and online resources. We will work with a number of texts from various genres, e.g. literary texts, articles from “Der Spiegel” and “Die Zeit” and excerpts from the textbook Die Deutschen by Wulf Koepcke. You will be watching short educational video clips describing and explaining everyday life throughout the ages. Please note that speaking and writing assignments will be tailored to students' proficiency level to help them improve their command of the German language.

Requirements: attendance, participation and homework; oral presentation; 3 longer essays (up to 3 pages each) or a number of shorter writing assignments; midterm and final exams

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 327: Modern Swiss Literature  3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: GERMN 202 or 203 or equivalent.

Course description: Switzerland has played an important role in German intellectual and literary history for centuries. One of the most significant periods was in the second half of the 20th century when especially the Swiss authors Friedrich Dürrenmatt and Max Frisch wrote masterpieces about universal topics of the modern human condition which are still widely read and/or performed and adapted in Germany and internationally. They had seen from up close, but not been involved in the ravages of war of the 20th century and thus had a privileged and prescient look at the ways in which life and society were evolving in the modern and post-modern world. Swiss German is one of the best-known German dialect families and is widely spoken in daily life. Standard German is almost a foreign language to most Swiss Germans, which leads to a literary language that is clear and relatively easy to comprehend for language learners, in spite of their literary quality. Selections from the works we will read have often been included in college language classes and will be very accessible to students after 4 semesters. After a brief introduction to Switzerland, its geography, its dialects, and recent history, we will read a brief tale by Peter Bichsel (text will be provided) and then three books (see below). Note on the editions: Since Frisch's and Dürrenmatt's books have been edited and abbreviated for student use very frequently, please buy only the editions which I will announce (they are all paperbacks) so that we will have the same page numbers when we discuss the works.

Course requirements: Class participation required. Individual light research assignments for in-class presentation. 1500-2000 words of writing; essay assignments will be differentiated according to student proficiency. Midterm and final exams. The class will be taught synchronously and students are expected to attend with their microphones and cameras turned on. Both devices need to work properly.

Required textbooks: Friedrich Dürrenmatt, Der Besuch der alten Dame (drama, 1956), ISBN 978-3257230451; Max Frisch, Homo Faber (novel, 1957), ISBN 978-3518368541

Possible additional textbooks (we will discuss in class which work students want to read most): Max Frisch, Andorra (drama, 1961), ISBN 978-3518367773; Friedrich Dürrenmatt, Der Richter und sein Henker (detective novel 1951), ISBN 978-3499101502); Milena Moser, Die Putzfrauinsel (novel, 1991), ISBN 978-3499138966.


Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

GERMN 346: German Literature of the 1930s and 1940s  3hrs, 3crs.

Prereq: One course numbered from GERMN 320 to 359 or 444 or equivalent or permission of instructor.

Course description: This course is conducted in German. In it, we will read and discuss literary texts written in German in the 1930s and 1940s, focusing on the historical, social, and political context of the time. We will study some writers who left Nazi Germany and some who stayed, and discuss some of the earliest literary reactions to Nazism and World War II. We will also look at historical documents and perhaps some films of the time.

Course requirements: Regular preparation of readings; active participation at each synchronous meeting; regular short writing assignments; at least one longer essay

Some of our readings will be provided to you at no cost; but you are responsible for acquiring the following books:

Stefan Zweig, Schachnovelle, ISBN 9783596215225

Franz Werfel, Jacobowsky und der Oberst, ISBN 9783596270255

Wolfgang Borchert, Draußen vor der Tür und ausgewählte Erzählungen, ISBN 9783499101700

Note: If you have previous knowledge of German, please contact the department for advice and placement.

 

Courses Conducted in English

GERMN 241:  German Fairy Tales  "W"

Pre- or Coreq: ENGL 120

Fairy tales are known all over the world. The most famous European book of fairy tales is the one collected by the Brothers Grimm. These stories have entered our collective unconscious but are not easily explained. We shall look at various attempts at explaining what fairy tales are all about, look at older stories that served as models for the Brothers Grimm and study modern versions of the tales including scenes from Walt Disney movies and "politically correct fairy tales." Students will read fairy tales, tell one that they know, and there will be regular written assignments, a midterm and final examination. All readings, discussions and written work will be in English. This course has a "W" designation.  

Course requirements: attendance and participation; regular preparation of readings; regular writing assignments.
Exam Format: written midterm and final exams
Textbooks: Jack Zipes, The Complete Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm, ISBN 978-0553382167
Joanna Cole, Best-Loved Folktales of the World, ISBN 978-0318796482 or ISBN 9780385189491

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