Introduction to research into European topics and to the analysis of problems.
TOPIC: Germany 1989 to 2010: Political transformation and social change
This course will introduce students to the political processes that led ‘from Bonn to Berlin’. Taking unification as a departure point, we will study institutional dynamics, social transformations and cultural cleavages in unified Germany. We will start by exploring the politics of unification, specifically the role of social movements in the GDR, the events around November 9, 1989 as well as the political processes leading to unification. In the second part of the course, we will trace dynamics of change and adaptation in the new ‘Berlin Republic’, such as the push for welfare reform, the political culture of gender and ethnicity, the new identity of Germany in international relations, and the role of collective memory and ‘Vergangenheitsbewältigung’ (dealing with the past).
Student learning goals
You will learn how Germany's past has a powerful influence on its present and future
You will learn how Germany adjusted its 'social economy' after 1989 to integrate the New Laender and to adjust to global pressures.
You will understand differences in Eastern and Western identities and how they shape policies
General method of instruction
Lecture and discussion
Class assignments and grading
This is a writing course that focuses on a research paper.
Active involvement in class, written assignments.