HIS/GER 355 ~ MODERN GERMAN HISTORY
Professor Maria Mitchell Office Hours:
Office: Stager 111 Wed & Fri, 11:00-11:50 a.m.
Office Phone: 291 4241 Thurs, 1:00-3:00 p.m.
E-mail: Maria.Mitchell@FandM.edu and by appointment
The calamitous history of modern Germany has propelled its
students into anguished retrospection. That terrible question –
How could it have happened? – weighs on them, a burden at
once hard to bear and impossible to shake off.
Peter Gay, Freud, Jews and Other Germans: Masters and Victims in Modernist Culture, p. 3.
This course introduces students to the major events and themes of modern German history. We will focus on continuities and ruptures in German society during the Second Empire, the Weimar Republic, National Socialism, the competing Republics, and the (unified) Federal Republic of Germany. Major questions of the course include the supposed peculiarity or "belatedness" of German industrial and state formation; gender, class, and religious identities; the impact of total war; economic and political crisis; the roots of dictatorship and democracy; revolution; the organization of genocide; and European unity.
Required Course Books:
Anonymous. A Woman in Berlin: Eight Weeks in the Conquered City: A Diary, translated by Philip Boehm. Henry Holt and Company, 2005.
Doris L. Bergen. War & Genocide: A Concise History of the Holocaust, 2nd ed. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2009.
Mary Fulbrook. A Concise History of Germany, 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press, 2004.
Jana Hensel. After the Wall: Confessions from an East German Childhood and the Life that Came Next, translated by Jefferson Chase. Public Affairs, 2004.
Heinrich Mann. Man of Straw. Viking Penguin, 1992. Also available as The Loyal Subject, edited by Helmut Peitsch. Continuum International Publishing Group, 1997.
Erich Maria Remarque. The Road Back, translated by A.W. Wheen. Ballantine Publishing Group, 1998.
Additional assignments are available on eDisk (People Þ M Þ Maria Mitchell Þ Courses Þ HIS 355 Þ Distribution).
Course Requirements and Late Paper Policy:
There will be two in-class exams, two six-to-eight-page papers, five scheduled quizzes, and a final examination. The format of the exams and paper will be discussed in class. You must submit a paper and pass the final exam in order to pass this course. Both papers should be e-mailed as attachments to me by 4:30 p.m. on their respective due dates. There will be no extensions granted. Final grades on papers received within twenty-four hours of their due times will be lowered two levels (from an A to a C, for example). Any paper submitted more than twenty-four hours late will be given an F. You should always come to class prepared to discuss the assigned reading; full class periods devoted to discussion are noted in the syllabus. Please remember: It is difficult to participate in class when you are not present; attendance is by definition crucial to your Class Participation grade.
First Exam 16.67%
Second Exam 16.67%
Final Exam 16.67%
First Paper 16.67%
Second Paper 16.67%
Attendance/Participation/Map Quizzes 16.65%
Topic Outline and Scheduled Readings
Lectures are designed to complement the readings; readings should always be completed for the day assigned before coming to class.
"Deutschland? aber wo liegt es? Ich weiss das Land nicht zu finden": Germany Undefined
Wednesday, August 31: Introduction to German History
Review of the syllabus; discussion of topics and themes
Friday, September 2: The Early Modern Inheritance and the Politics of Restoration Germany
Fulbrook, 69-115; begin Mann
Monday, September 5: 1848: The Turning Point that Didn't Turn?
Fulbrook, 116-122; continue Mann
Wednesday, September 7: Bismarck and the Incomplete Nation
Fulbrook, 122-137; continue Mann
"What a turn of events has occurred through God's guidance":
The Kaiserreich and its Critics
Friday, September 9: Society and Politics in Wilhelminian Germany
Fulbrook, 137-148; continue Mann; Heinrich Class, "If I Were Kaiser" ( http://www.h-net.msu.edu/~german/gtext/kaiserreich/class.html ); "Die Internationale" ( http://www.h-net.msu.edu/~german/gtext/kaiserreich/internat.html )
Monday, September 12: The Separation of Gendered Spheres
Wednesday, September 14: The Making of the Man of Straw
Discussion of Mann, chapters I - IV
Friday, September 16: Masculinity, Nationalism, and the Duel
Monday, September 19: The Man of Straw Comes to Power
Discussion of Mann, chapters V - VI
"Had we returned home in 1916 ...": War, Revolution, and the Weimar Republic
Wednesday, September 21: The Outbreak of World War
Fulbrook, 148-154; begin Remarque
Friday, September 23: No Class
Submit paper as attachment over e-mail by 4:30 p.m.
Monday, September 26: Defeat and Revolution
Fulbrook, 155-163; continue Remarque
Tuesday, September 27, 7:30 p.m.: “Rosa Luxemburg”
The Other Room
Wednesday, September 28: The Death of the Radical Left
Rosa Luxemburg, "The War and the Workers" ( http://www.h-net.msu.edu/~german/gtext/kaiserreich/lux.html ); continue Remarque
Discussion of Luxemburg
Friday, September 30: The Weimar Republic's Early Agonies
Fulbrook, 164-167; continue Remarque
Monday, October 3 (Tag der deutschen Einheit): The Long Road Back from War
Discussion of Remarque
Wednesday, October 5: EXAM
Friday, October 7: The Weimar Republic Takes Hold
Monday, October 10: Weimar Culture: Art, Architecture, Gay Life, and the New Woman
Bauhaus – Archiv Museum of Design ( http://www.bauhaus.de/english/ ); Wassily Kandinsky
( http://www.mcs.csuhayward.edu/~malek/Kandin.html ); Paul Klee
"The Theory and Practice of Hell": National Socialism, World War II, and the Holocaust
Wednesday, October 12: The Rise of National Socialism
Begin Bergen; Program of the National Socialist German Workers' Party
Friday, October 14: The Republic under Siege
Fulbrook, 172-179; continue Bergen
Wednesday, October 19: The Construction of Dictatorship
Fulbrook, 179-187; continue Bergen; Nazi Propaganda Posters
Friday, October 21: "Wollt Ihr den totalen Krieg?": Germany at War
Fulbrook, 187-197; continue Bergen; Address by Adolf Hitler to the Reichstag
Monday, October 24: "An unwritten and never-to-be-written page ...": The Holocaust
Fulbrook, 197-204; continue Bergen
Wednesday, October 26: War & Genocide
Discussion of Bergen
Friday, October 28: EXAM
“Sie haben gebangt und gearbeitet”: Zero Hour and the Hour of the Woman
Monday, October 31: Germany in "Stunde Null"
Fulbrook, 205-212; begin Anonymous, Foreword, Introduction, April 20-May 8,
June 16-22, 1945
Wednesday, November 2: Die Stunde der Frau: The Marriage of Maria Braun
Continue Anonymous, Foreword, Introduction, April 20-May 8, June 16-22, 1945
Friday, November 4: Race, Sex, and Masculinity in Postwar Germany
Maria Höhn, “Heimat in Turmoil: African-American GIs in 1950s West Germany,” in Hanna Schissler, ed., The Miracle Years: A Cultural History of West Germany, 1949-1963 (on eDisk); continue Anonymous, Foreword, Introduction, April 20-May 8, June 16-22, 1945
Discussion with Professor Maria Höhn, Vassar College
The Phillips Museum of Art, Rothman Gallery, 4:45 p.m. Exhibit Opening
Monday, November 7: A Woman in Berlin
Finish Anonymous, Foreword, Introduction, April 20-May 8, June 16-22, 1945
Discussion of Anonymous
"Wen schmerzt noch Deutschlands Teilung?": Germany Divided
Wednesday, November 9: The Cold War: Germany East and West
Thursday, November 10: No Class
Submit paper as attachment over e-mail by 4:30 p.m.
Friday, November 11: The Federal Republic of Germany
Fulbrook, 220-224, 230-235; begin Karin Bauer, “In Search of Ulrike Meinhof,” in Karin Bauer, ed., Everybody Talks about the Weather … We Don’t, 12-99 (on eDisk)
Monday, November 14: Students on the March: 1968
Rudi Dutschke, “On Anti-authoritarianism,” in Carl Oglesby, ed., The New Left Reader, 243-253 (on eDisk); Rudi Dutschke, “The Students and the Revolution (7 March 1968),” in Jeremi Suri, The Global Revolutions of 1968, 118-131 (on eDisk); continue Karin Bauer, “In Search of Ulrike Meinhof,” in Karin Bauer, ed., Everybody Talks about the Weather … We Don’t, 12-99 (on eDisk)
Wednesday, November 16: The Turbulence of Terrorism: The RAF
Finish Karin Bauer, “In Search of Ulrike Meinhof,” in Karin Bauer, ed., Everybody Talks about the Weather … We Don’t, 12-99 (on eDisk)
Friday, November 18: Everybody Talks about the Weather … We Don’t
Ulrike Meinhof, “Napalm and Pudding, “Counter-Violence,” “From Protest to Resistance,” and “Setting Fires to Department Stores,” in Karin Bauer, ed., Everybody Talks about the Weather … We Don’t, 229-248 (on eDisk)
Discussion of Dutschke, Bauer, and Meinhof
Monday, November 21: The German Democratic Republic
Begin Hensel; The Berlin Wall ( http://germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org/sub_imglist.cfm?sub_id=106§ion_id=15 )
Monday, November 28: Between Honi and Helmut: Germany East and West
Continue Hensel; Erich Honecker Addresses the FDJ
"Einigkeit, und Recht, und Freiheit"? Germany Unified
Wednesday, November 30: The Wende and the New Republic
Fulbrook, 243-249; continue Hensel
Friday, December 2: The Undersides of Unification
Fulbrook, 250-261; continue Hensel
Monday, December 5: Germany into the Twenty-First Century
Tuesday, December 6, 7:30 p.m.: “Good Bye Lenin!”
The Other Room
Wednesday, December 7: After the Wall
Discussion of Hensel and “Good Bye Lenin!”
Friday, December 9: “Deutschland? Aber wo liegt es? Ich weiss das Land nicht zu finden”
Review for the Final Exam
Exam scheduled by Registrar (December 14-18)