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These lectures are intended as an introduction to the major developments in German literature since 1990. They supplement tutorials taken for Papers VIII and  ...
Post-Wende Literature Hilary Term 2013, Weeks 2,4,6,8

Course Objectives: These lectures are intended as an introduction to the major developments in German literature since 1990. They supplement tutorials taken for Papers VIII and XII, and will comment on selected authors set for Paper X (Sebald; Grass; Wolf). They seek to provide essential background information on the literary, political, and social context, as well as examples from key texts of the period. The lectures will continue next term, focusing on post-1990 German cinema.

Lecture Course Outline: Week 2 Re-unification and its Effects: An Overview • Re-unification and the Wende: The Political Background • Literary Trends since 1990 – Debates and Disputes • The Legacy of the Third Reich • Responses to Unification and the Fall of the Wall • Looking to the Future: A New Generation • German Identity and ‘Normalization’ • Conclusions

Week 4 Approaches to the Past – The Legacy of Fascism • A New View of the Perpetrators? (Bernhard Schlink, Der Vorleser; Marcel Beyer, Flughunde) • Germans as Victims of the Second World War: Breaking a Taboo?

(Günter Grass, Im Krebsgang; Uwe Timm, Am Beispiel meines Bruders) • Family Stories (Hans-Ulrich Treichel, Der Verlorene; Tanja Dückers, Himmelskörper) • The Aesthetics of Memory (W.G. Sebald, Austerlitz, Die Ausgewanderten)

Week 6 Literary Responses to the Fall of the Wall • Poetic Responses to Re-unification (Von einem Land und vom anderen: Gedichte zur deutschen Wende 1989/1990) • Remembering the GDR (Christa Wolf, Was bleibt; Monika Maron, Stille Zeile Sechs) • The Search for the ‘Wenderoman’ (Thomas Brussig, Helden wie wir; Ingo Schulze, Simple Storys;

Günter Grass, Ein weites Feld)

Week 8 Looking to the Future – New Generations • Writing Germany: A New Generation (Christian Kracht, Faserland; Judith Hermann, Sommerhaus, später) • ‘Ausländerliteratur’ (Emine Sevgi Özdamar, Eine Karawanserei hat zwei Türen aus einer kam ich rein aus der anderen ging ich raus; Zafer Şenocak, Gefährliche Verwandtschaft; Yoko Tawada, Talisman) • General Conclusions

General Reading: A detailed bibliography for each topic covered will be provided at the relevant lecture. The following texts provide a general introduction to post-Unification literature and film.

Anderson, Jeffrey, and Eric Langenbacher (eds.), From the Bonn to the Berlin Republic:

Germany at the Twentieth Anniversary of Unification (New York: Berghahn Books, 2010)

Arnold-de Simine, Silke (ed.), Memory Traces: 1989 and the Question of German Cultural Identity (Bern: Lang, 2005) Cohen-Pfister, Laurel, and Susanne Vees-Gulani (eds.), Generational Shifts in Contemporary German Culture (Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2010) Gerstenberger, Katharina, and Patricia Herminghouse (eds.), German Literature in a New Century: Trends, Traditions, Transitions, Transformations (Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2008) Halle, Randall, German Film after Germany: Towards a Transnational Aesthetic (Urbana and Chicago: U of Illinois P, 2008) Saunders, Anna, and Debbie Pinfold, Remembering and Rethinking the GDR: Multiple Perspectives and Plural Authenticities (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) Taberner, Stuart (ed.), The Novel in German since 1990 (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2011) ---., Contemporary German Fiction: Writing in the Berlin Republic (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2007) ---., German Literature in the Age of Globalisation (Birmingham: Birmingham UP, 2004) ---., German Literature of the 1990s and Beyond: Normalization and the Berlin Republic (Rochester, NY and Woodbridge: Camden House 2005) ---., and Paul Cooke (eds.), German Culture, Politics, and Literature into the Twenty-First Century: Beyond Normalization (Rochester, NY and Woodbridge: Camden House, 2006) ---., and Frank Finlay (eds.), Recasting German Identity: Culture, Politics and Literature in the Berlin Republic (Rochester, NY and Woodbridge: Camden House, 2002) Varney, Denise (ed.), Theatre in the Berlin Republic: German Drama since Reunification (Oxford: Lang, 2008)