Examines special topics in European history.
The murder of millions of European Jews by Germans in Nazi-occupied Europe, is a crucial historical event of the 20th century. This lecture examines how it defined Germany after 1945 as well as differences in the political and intellectual cultures of East and West Germany from 1948/49 to 1989 and unified Germany after 1989. The lecture will focus on two questions, that of „Vergangenheitsbewältigung“, of ‚mastering’ the National Socialist past and Hitler’s dictatorship, as well as genocide, antisemitism after 1945 and Jewish/non-Jewish relations. Based on the theory of fields (Bourdieu), these two questions will be discussed systematically with regard to the political field, the religious field, the academic field (and education more broadly), and public discourse.
The lecture is structured in two parts. The first part will give a brief introduction to German History 1871-1989. Based on this, different topics will be discussed in the second part: i.e. reeducation, antisemitism, political culture (and political scandals), reemigration, the Christian Churches and the Christian-Jewish dialogue, Jews in Germany, interpretations of the Past (totalitarianism, the „Historian’s Debate“, the Goldhagen-Debate), neofascism, antifascism, the politics of Memory (Memorials, Museums).
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
Lecture, Discussion, Reading
Useful Reading Mary Fulbrook. A History of Germany 1918 – 2008: A Divided Nation. Wiley Blackwell, 2008. If not available use sec ed., same author: A Concise History of Germany. Cambridge University Press 1991
Class assignments and grading
Students enrolled in this course are expected to attend lectures regularly and to complete assigned reading by the dates specified. - Students will take three in-class exams (no final) - From week 2 to 9, a one-page response paper to the weeks reading (six out of seven) should be turned in every Monday. This has to include bibliographical references to all literature used according to style sheet (see reader) and make use at least of one verbatim quote and one paraphrased quote. - Give one brief oral presentation (in groups).
Grades will be determined on the basis of the following break-down: Exam 1 15% Exam 2 20% Exam 3 20% 6 Response papers 30% Oral Presentation 15%