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FUBiS Term I 2021 Online


Program start: Monday, January 4, 2021
Program end: Wednesday, January 27, 2021

ECTS credits:
4
Program fee:
€ 90; with early bird discount: € 50 (registration until November 9, 2020)
Course fee:
€ 800
Registration deadline:
December 7, 2020

You can register here!

Get the program flyer (pdf) here.

Program structure:

  • A combination of courses is not applicable.
  • The number of participants in each course is limited to 18 (15 in language courses). In exceptional cases, more participants per class may be allowed.
  • Course enrollment is guaranteed after complete registration and full payment of course tuition and program fees.
  • Credits can only be awarded if you are currently/ have been enrolled at a university.

Course schedule


Printable version of course schedule (pdf)

Online German Language Courses

Language of instruction: German
Course type:
Online language course
Contact hours:
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 72 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time
: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)

Student Profile

This course is designed for the beginner student with no previous knowledge of German.

Course Objectives

Within three weeks, this course will help you to develop basic competences in listening, speaking, reading and writing as well as a basic knowledge of the German culture.

  • By the end of the course, you will be able to deal with everyday situations in a German-speaking environment and to conduct simple conversations.
  • You will have developed reading strategies that allow you to understand simple newspaper and magazine articles as well as short literary texts.
  • In addition, you will learn to write, revise and proofread short texts in German.
  • Finally, you will be able to understand discussions on familiar topics.

Textbook

studio [21] Grundstufe A1: Gesamtband. Das Deutschbuch, Hermann Funk, Christina Kuhn, Laura Nielsen, Kerstin Rische, Cornelsen Verlag, 2015. Will be made available as an e-book.

Literary texts and supplemental materials in consultation with the course instructor.

Daily Lesson

In the first week, the course takes place on Wednesday and Thursday. In week 2 and 3, lessons take place Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. In the last week, lessons take place on Monday and Tuesday. Please take into consideration the possible time difference and make sure that you are able to be online during those times.

Technical Equipment

  • Working internet connection
  • Computer, laptop or tablet (we don’t recommend the use of smart phones)
  • Software: Webex Meetings/Webex Training, Blackboard
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Attendance

Each class consists of six teaching modules (45 minutes each), split in 3 live online modules and the rest as group- or independent study in the form of tasks on the online learning platform. The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 72 contact hours. Unexcused absences will negatively impact the student’s course grades. Regular attendance is mandatory and you will need to complete at least 80% of the tasks on the online learning platform to pass the course.

Active Participation

We expect committed and consistent interest in the acquisition of the German language. You will prove this by participating constructively and productively in the lessons and excursions, completing homework assignments and being prepared for every class. Every student is expected to respect the ideas and comments of his/her peers.

Oral Presentation

You will prepare a three-minute oral presentation. It is important that you speak freely rather than reading the oral presentation and that you keep to the time allowed.

Essays

In this course, you will write two essays (font size 12, double-spaced, 100 – 150 words). Your teacher will mark potential errors as such and you are required to correct your essay and hand in a second corrected version. For the first version of your essay, you can obtain a maximum of 100 points; for the second version, you will receive up to 50% of the missing points.

When writing your essay, you will strive first and foremost for clarity (organization and style) and accuracy (grammar and syntax).

Reflective Journal/Blog Entries and Comments

Throughout the term you will write various online journal or blog entries – independently or on given topics – to reflect on certain aspects of your German course and will comment on the entries of the other students. Your instructor will comment the content of your entries. However, no corrections will be made. The aim of the entries is that you learn how to express a critical and self-reflective position in a linguistically creative way.

Tests

You will write one or more tests throughout the duration of the course. Your instructor will inform you about the format and other details after the course start.

Group Project

Together with two or three peers you will prepare a creative and linguistically demanding oral presentation of approximately 10 minutes about your impressions of your German course and the topics discussed in class (funny, bizarre, interesting facts etc.). The projects (sketches, parodies, PowerPoint presentations, movies, songs, poems etc.) will be presented on the last day of class. Most importantly, every group member should play an active role in the presentation, i.e. should receive an equal amount of speaking time during the presentation.

Evaluation

  • Active participation and homework 200 points
  • Tasks on the online learning platform 250 points
  • Oral presentation 100 points
  • Essays 100 points
  • Journal/blog entries and comments 100 points
  • Tests 150 points
  • Group project 100 points

Maximum Score 1,000 points

Language of instruction: German
Course type:
Online language course
Contact hours:
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 72 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time
: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)

Student Profile

This course is designed for beginners with basic knowledge of German.

Course Objectives

This course will help you to expand your competences in listening, speaking, reading and writing within three weeks, deepen your knowledge of grammar as well as your knowledge of the German culture.

  • By the end of the course you will be able to deal with everyday situations in a German-speaking environment and to conduct simple conversations.
  • You will have developed reading strategies that allow you to understand simple newspaper and magazine articles as well as short literary texts more detailed.
  • In addition, you will improve your essay writing skills, which means you will be able to write short texts on different topics, revise and proofread them.
  • Finally, you will be able to understand discussions on familiar topics more detailed.

Textbook

studio [21] Grundstufe A2: Gesamtband. Das Deutschbuch, Hermann Funk, Christina Kuhn, Laura Nielsen, Kerstin Rische, Cornelsen Verlag, 2015. Will be made available as an e-book.

Literary texts and supplemental materials in consultation with the course instructor.

Daily Lesson

In the first week, the course takes place on Wednesday and Thursday. In week 2 and 3, lessons take place Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. In the last week, lessons take place on Monday and Tuesday. Please take into consideration the possible time difference and make sure that you are able to be online during those times.

Technical Equipment

  • Working internet connection
  • Computer, laptop or tablet (we don’t recommend the use of smart phones)
  • Software: Webex Meetings/Webex Training, Blackboard
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Attendance

Each class consists of six teaching modules (45 minutes each), split in 3 live online modules and the rest as group- or independent study in the form of tasks on the online learning platform. The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 72 contact hours. Unexcused absences will negatively impact the student’s course grades. Regular attendance is mandatory and you will need to complete at least 80% of the tasks on the online learning platform to pass the course.

Active Participation

We expect committed and consistent interest in the acquisition of the German language. You will prove this by participating constructively and productively in the lessons and excursions, completing homework assignments and being prepared for every class. Every student is expected to respect the ideas and comments of his/her peers.

Oral Presentation

You will prepare a five-minute oral presentation. It is important that you speak freely rather than reading the oral presentation and that you keep to the time allowed.

Essays

In this course you will write two essays (font size 12, double-spaced, 150 – 200 words). Your teacher will mark potential errors as such and you are required to correct your essay and hand in a second corrected version. For the first version of your essay you can obtain a maximum of 100 points; for the second version you will receive up to 50% of the missing points.

When writing your essay, you will strive first and foremost for clarity (organization and style) and accuracy (grammar and syntax).

Reflective Journal/Blog Entries and Comments

Throughout the term you will write various online journal or blog entries – independently or on given topics – to reflect on certain aspects of your German course and will comment on the entries of the other students. Your instructor will comment the content of your entries. However, no corrections will be made. The aim of the entries is that you learn how to express a critical and self-reflective position in a linguistically creative way.

Tests

During the three weeks you will write one or more tests. Your instructor will inform you about the format and other details after the course start.

Group Project

Together with two or three peers you will prepare a creative and linguistically demanding oral presentation of approximately 10 minutes about your impressions of your German course and the topics discussed in class (funny, bizarre, interesting facts etc.). The projects (sketches, parodies, PowerPoint presentations, movies, songs, poems etc.) will be presented on the last day of class. Most importantly, every group member should play an active role in the presentation, i.e. should receive an equal amount of speaking time during the presentation.

Evaluation

  • Active participation and homework 200 points
  • Tasks on the online learning platform 250 points
  • Oral presentation 100 points
  • Essays 100 points
  • Journal/blog entries and comments 100 points
  • Tests 150 points
  • Group project 100 points

Maximum Score 1,000 points

Language of instruction: German
Course type:
Online language course
Contact hours:
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 72 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time
: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)

Student Profile

This course is designed for students who have successfully completed the basic level of German and who have a sound knowledge of German at the A2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

Course Objectives

Within three weeks, this course will help you to expand your competences in listening, speaking, reading and writing and strengthen your knowledge of grammar, while emphasizing self-correction, as well as deepen your knowledge of the German culture.

Furthermore, you will analyze and interpret cultural, political, and historical topics in German-speaking countries and compare them with your own cultural background.

  • By the end of the course you will have developed and regularly use new strategies for language acquisition.
  • You will be able to engage in detailed discussions on above mentioned topics.
  • Furthermore, you will have developed reading strategies that will allow you to understand different text types in detail.
  • In addition, you will improve your essay writing skills, i.e. you will be able to write short texts on different topics, revise and proofread them.

Textbook

studio [21] Grundstufe B1: Gesamtband. Das Deutschbuch, Hermann Funk, Christina Kuhn, Laura Nielsen, Kerstin Rische, Cornelsen Verlag, 2015. Will be made available as an e-book.

Literary texts and supplemental materials in consultation with the course instructor.

Daily Lesson

In the first week, the course takes place on Wednesday and Thursday. In week 2 and 3, lessons take place Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. In the last week, lessons take place on Monday and Tuesday. Please take into consideration the possible time difference and make sure that you are able to be online during those times.

Technical Equipment

  • Working internet connection
  • Computer, laptop or tablet (we don’t recommend the use of smart phones)
  • Software: Webex Meetings/Webex Training, Blackboard
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or   Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Attendance

Each class consists of six teaching modules (45 minutes each), split in 3 live online modules and the rest as group- or independent study in the form of tasks on the online learning platform. The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 72 contact hours. Unexcused absences will negatively impact the student’s course grades. Regular attendance is mandatory and you will need to complete at least 80% of the tasks on the online learning platform to pass the course.

Active Participation

We expect committed and consistent interest in the acquisition of the German language. You will prove this by participating constructively and productively in the lessons and excursions, completing homework assignments and being prepared for every class. Every student is expected to respect the ideas and comments of his/her peers.

Oral Presentation

You will prepare a ten-minute oral presentation. It is important that you prepare and explain for your presentation relevant vocabulary beforehand (max. 5 – 7) and that you give your peers a specific assignment. Furthermore, it is important that you speak freely rather than reading the oral presentation and that you keep to the time allowed.

Essays

In this course you will write two essays (font size 12, double-spaced, 200 – 250 words). Your teacher will mark potential errors as such and you are required to correct your essay and hand in a second corrected version. For the first version of your essay you can obtain a maximum of 100 points; for the second version you will receive up to 50% of the missing points.

When writing your essay, you will strive first and foremost for clarity (organization and style) and accuracy (grammar and syntax). You are encouraged to incorporate complex constructions, but please concentrate on syntactic and grammatical accuracy.

Reflective Journal/Blog Entries and Comments

Throughout the term you will write various online journal or blog entries – independently or on given topics – to reflect on certain aspects of your German course and will comment on the entries of the other students. Your instructor will comment the content of your entries. However, no corrections will be made. The aim of the entries is that you learn how to express a critical and self-reflective position in a linguistically creative way.

Tests

During the three weeks you will write one or more tests. Your instructor will inform you about the format and other details after the course start.

Group Project

Together with two or three peers you will prepare a creative and linguistically demanding oral presentation of approximately 10 minutes about your impressions of your German course and the topics discussed in class (funny, bizarre, interesting facts etc.). The projects (sketches, parodies, PowerPoint presentations, movies, songs, poems etc.) will be presented on the last day of class. Most importantly, every group member should play an active role in the presentation, i.e. should receive an equal amount of speaking time during the presentation.

Evaluation

  • Active participation and homework 200 points
  • Tasks on the online learning platform 250 points
  • Oral presentation 100 points
  • Essays 100 points
  • Journal/blog entries and comments 100 points
  • Tests 150 points
  • Group project 100 points

Maximum Score 1,000 points

Online Subject Courses

Instructor: Dr. Jan-Henrik Meyer
Language of instruction:
English
Course type:
Online subject course
Contact hours: 
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 48 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time
: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)
  • Syllabus (printable PDF incl. day-to-day schedule)

Course Description

The course will introduce the basics of the European Union (EU) and describe and explain the processes of widening and deepening of this unique political entity, drawing on some relevant theorising. It will provide an overview of European Union history, and will familiarise students with the EU’s evolution in economic and political terms as well as of its institutional structure and key policies up until today.

The focus of the course will be internally on the state of EU integration and its challenges - the need for reform and the growing difficulty to actually agree upon and implement reforms in the face of rising populism, authoritarianism and nationalism. Externally, the course explores the international role of the EU with its emphasis on multilateralism, including its self-declared role as a leader in the fight against climate change. Special emphasis will be placed on Europe’s current crises – the Euro crisis, the migration crisis, Brexit and the challenges resulting from the Corona pandemic that asymmetrically hit Europe.

The sessions consist of lectures, literature-based discussions and oral presentations from working groups. The course will include virtual visits and (upon availability) talks with experts from a number of institutions in Germany’s political center. Students will thus have the chance to discuss some of the topics with experts from political institutions and think tanks.

Student Profile

Students from different countries, academic levels and backgrounds who are generally interested in European integration will benefit from each other in an intercultural and interdisciplinary learning process.

The course does not require special knowledge about European politics, law, history or culture, but participants should be interested in more than just their field of specialization.

In-class participation, especially in the discussions with experts, and in virtual presentations is essential for students’ learning experience and plays an important role in grading.

Prerequisites

The course is designed for students with different academic backgrounds and a general interest in Europe. There are no special prerequisites for the course.

Required Language Skills

The language of instruction is English. Language proficiency on an advanced Intermediate level (Mittelstufe II) is a prerequisite for participation. For orientation purposes, you can assess your language skills here (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

General Requirements

Please make sure to be online approximately from 8 am CET to 12:30 pm CET on the respective course days! Therefore, please check the possible time difference between Germany and your country of residence.

We also recommend that you make sure to have a quiet and appropriate working space.

To ensure a comfortable learning environment for all, please adhere to general netiquette rules.

Technical Requirements

  • stable internet connection
  • fully functional device, such as computer, laptop or tablet (use   of smart phones not recommended), headset recommended
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Course Requirements

Attendance; active participation in the seminar's discussions and discussions with experts; oral and written presentation of a certain subject.

Grading

  • Participation: 40%
  • Oral presentations: 30%
  • Final paper: 30%

Reading

See course schedule. A course reader will be provided.

Instructor: Dr. Lauren van Vuuren
Language of instruction:
English
Course type:
Online subject course
Contact hours:
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 48 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)

Get an impression about this course by watching this recording of an exemplary course session with Dr. Lauren van Vuuren.
  • Syllabus (printable PDF incl. day-to-day schedule)

Course Description

This course is about Berlin, and the story of its tumultuous and epoch defining twentieth century. We examine this history through various lenses: the biographies of individuals, the words of writers who bore witness to the vertiginous social, political and physical changes the city underwent, and buildings and monuments whose physical construction, destruction and reconstruction reflected the ideological turmoil and conflict of twentieth century Berlin.

Famous Berliners we will meet include the murdered Communist leader Rosa Luxemburg, the artist Käthe Kollwitz, the actress Marlene Dietrich, the Nazi filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl, the adopted Berliner David Bowie and the famous East German dissident musician Wolf Biermann. The contextualized stories of these individuals will offer us unique perspectives politically, artistically and socially into the tumult and struggle that marked their times in the city. These figures occupy a range of different position(s) as Berliners, as radicals, as artists of resistance to or collaboration with Nazism, and Communism, as drifters and exiles whose stories reflect Berlin’s unique position in the twentieth century as ‘no man’s land, frontier, a city adrift in the sands of Central Europe.’

In a similar way, we will examine the words of writers who bore witness to the extremism and societal upheaval that marked twentieth century Berlin. From the witnessing of Roth and Isherwood to life in Weimar and Nazi Berlin, to the social and political commentary by Christa Wolf on the moral struggles of life lived on different sides of the Berlin Wall, we will assess their writings in their historical contexts. We will assess their words as evocations of Berlin, but also as potential or overt acts of resistance to the extremism they lived under, that attempted to maintain a solidarity with the idea of Berlin as a place of artistic and social freedom and permissiveness.

Finally, we will discover the story of places in Berlin whose physical building, destruction and rebuilding can be situated in the wider systems of ideology, power and social relations that so cataclysmically defined the physical landscape of Berlin after 1933. In this, we will focus on the story of Potsdamer Platz, the Palace of the People and as an opposite postscript to Berlin’s twentieth century, the Holocaust Memorial in Mitte.

This course does not seek to provide a ‘grand narrative’ of Berlin’s twentieth century history. Instead, it follows a thread that weaves through the history: the thread left behind by those who bore witness to their times. By tracing the stories of contemporary witnesses, left for us in books, films and songs, and in the physical construction of the city, we open up a human dimension that enriches and challenges our understanding of Berlin’s traumatic recent past.

Structured largely chronologically, the course will work with films and novels whilst building on a clear historiographical base provided in class seminars. Guests speakers, class discussion, assigned reading work and individual research will form the basis for a seminar paper that students will be required to submit at the end of the course. This history course approaches the story of Berlin through the reflections and refractions of individual humans’ lives who struggled upon the immense stage of a city at the very symbolic and literal heart of the catastrophes of the twentieth century.

Student Profile

This course is for university level students with open minds and incurable curiosity about the world around them.

Prerequisites

Interest in Berlin, and its extraordinary recent past.

Required Language Skills

The language of instruction is English. Language proficiency on an advanced Intermediate level (Mittelstufe II) is a prerequisite for participation. For orientation purposes, you can assess your language skills here (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

General Requirements

Please make sure to be online approximately from 8 am CET to 12:30 pm CET on the respective course days! Therefore, please check the possible time difference between Germany and your country of residence.

We also recommend that you make sure to have a quiet and appropriate working space.

To ensure a comfortable learning environment for all, please adhere to general netiquette rules.

Technical Requirements

  • stable internet connection
  • fully functional device, such as computer, laptop or tablet (use   of smart phones not recommended), headset recommended
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Course Requirements

Attendance and the careful reading of the assigned course materials are most important. The reading pack will be divided into compulsory and supplementary readings. The course will engaged discussion of the material in class that shows you have completed the required reading, and the completion of a final paper on a topic related to the course but decided by yourself in discussion with the lecturer. Guidelines for the papers as well as suggested topics will be distributed during the first session. The instructor will be available for student consultations should any further guidance be required.

Grading

  • 20% Class participation
  • 20% Short presentation
  • 60% Research paper

‘Class Participation’ will mean active participation in class discussion. ‘Short Presentation’ will be a brief presentation whereby students will describe the topic they have chosen for their research paper, and link their choice to themes in the course that they have found interesting. It will provide a useful chance for feedback and discussion within the group as a whole.

Reading

A course reader will be provided online as PDF file.

Instructor: Dr. Frieder Otto Wolf
Language of instruction:
English
Course type:
Online Subject course
Contact hours:
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 48 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)
  • Syllabus (printable PDF incl. day-to-day schedule)

Course Description

Philosophy has constituted a central element in the emergence of modern German culture. In the late 18th century, German philosophy participated in the broader European Enlightenment culture, which was in turn connected to the development of modern empirical science. Under the impression of the historical changes brought about by the French Revolution and by the ‘Industrial Revolution’ in Great Britain, a special constellation of German philosophy emerged at the end of the 18th century, which has deeply left its mark on subsequent philosophical thinking far beyond Germany.

This philosophy course addresses the historical reality of this ‘German moment of philosophy’ in two subsequent phases: In the first part, we follow the emergence and full deployment of German philosophy from its Kantian beginnings to Hegel’s grand but fragile synthesis, trying to understand its richness as well as its fragility. In a second part, we discuss the later renewal of German philosophy in the late 19th century and its historical tragedy in the 20th century. This will include a discussion of the new beginnings of philosophy since the mid-19th century, from Marx, and Nietzsche, via Frege to Husserl and Wittgenstein, who have been reacting to the scientific and political revolutions of the late 19th and early 20th century. Martin Heidegger as an established pro-Nazi philosopher and Max Horkheimer as the leading philosopher of the “Frankfurt School” driven into exile are studied as philosophers immersed into the Night of the 20th century.

Finally, post-World War II developments in philosophy (as exemplified by Jürgen Habermas) will be looked at as pathways out of the self-destructive turn the ‘German moment of philosophy’ in Germany had taken in the first decades of the 20th century, and as passages into an emerging world philosophy.

The course will be based upon contemporary attempts at rethinking a global philosophical perspective. The focus is on the tension between the Enlightenment heritage of a universalizing human philosophy and a national culture project, as well as on the tension between classicist rationalism and romantic emotionalism in its construction as a series of philosophical projects. From the perspective of a German version of the dialectics of the Enlightenment, the German philosophers of the 19th and 20th centuries will be studied in context - combining the reading of key texts with a reconstruction of their historical contexts and their interaction.

Student Profile

This course is open for students from all disciplines having a deep interest in Philosophy. Prior exposure to the field of philosophy will be helpful.

Required Language Skills

The language of instruction is English. Language proficiency on an advanced Intermediate level (Mittelstufe II) is a prerequisite for participation. For orientation purposes, you can assess your language skills here (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

General Requirements

Please make sure to be online approximately from 8 am CET to 12:30 pm CST on the respective course days! Therefore, please check the possible time difference between Germany and your country of residence.

We also recommend that you make sure to have a quiet and appropriate working space.

To ensure a comfortable learning environment for all, please adhere to general netiquette rules.

Technical Requirements

  • stable internet connection
  • fully functional device, such as computer, laptop or tablet (use of smart phones not recommended), headset recommended
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Course Requirements

Active participation, course presentation, electronic paper exam, essay paper

Grading

  • Active Participation: 20%
  • Course presentation: 25%
  • Electronic paper exam: 25%
  • Essay paper: 30%

Reading

A course reader will be provided online as PDF file.

Instructor: Dr. Marcus Funck
Language of instruction:
English
Course type:
Online subject course
Contact hours:
The coursework corresponds to an on-site course amounting to 48 contact hours.
Course days
: see class schedule
Time
: 8 am - 12:30 pm CET
ECTS credits
: 4
Course fee:
€ 800 (excl. program fee of € 90/ € 50 with early bird discount until November 9, 2020)

Get an impression about this course by watching this recording of an exemplary course session with Dr. Marcus Funck.
  • Syllabus (printable PDF incl. day-to-day schedule)

Course Description

The ‘thousand year Reich’ that Hitler promised when he became Chancellor of Germany in January 1933 lasted but 12 years. During this time, however, Hitler and his Nazi Party came to dominate European and even world affairs, terrorizing vast numbers of Germans, launching a devastating war, and orchestrating the murder of more than five million Jews. Yet Hitler and the Nazi Party gained the active support and involvement of most Germans. How was this possible?

This class focuses on Hitler’s Germany and it begins with the essential 19th century background. How did political anti-Semitism grow there? What shaped the social and political life? Central to this session will be a discussion of the broad political currents and the popular literature that Hitler and many of his supporters read and absorbed.

Crucial to understanding the lure of Hitler and the Nazi Party was Germany’s experience in the First World War, a conflict that decimated a generation and destroyed Europe as it was known. Germany became a democratic state, but was torn by political divisions and dissatisfaction. In this climate of uncertainty and despair, Hitler and the Nazi Party grew from a small group on the radical fringe in Munich to a national force. How did this happen? Those traits of Hitler crucial to his success, particularly his charisma, will be defined and analyzed within the broader political context of Weimar political life.

In late January 1933 Hitler gained the long desired but elusive goal: he became chancellor of Germany, the leader of a coalition government. Much attention will be paid to how Hitler, his cabinet, and supporters were able to consolidate the control over the state and society within a matter of months. This came at the cost of political liberties, through the growing use of terror, oppression, and intimidation. Yet, Hitler gained supporters as he seemingly offered economic stability and a new unity to the German people. How the regime solidified its control over society and political life will be examined and discussed at length in this session.

A key element of Hitler’s rule was the concentration camp system, what came to be a vast chain of prisons and centers of oppression and death. How this developed will be examined and analyzed.

Hitler’s ambitions, the conquest of ‘living space’ in Eastern Europe and the annihilation of the Jews, motivated his foreign ambitions and led directly to World War II, the most destructive

conflict in human history. A central element of the war was the Holocaust, the all-out program to destroy the Jews of Europe. The session will examine closely these developments, the nature of the war, how the Holocaust was implemented, and the role that terror played in sustaining Nazi rule. We will also discuss the measures taken against the handicapped, homosexuals, Sinti and Roma.

In Germany and later in occupied Europe opposition and resistance emerged and challenged Nazi rule. Opponents were motivated by a variety of reasons, some personal, some political, and these too will be discussed.

Lastly, the class will examine the end of the war, the so-called ‘zero hour’ in Germany, the destruction and collapse of Germany, and then how this nation has dealt with the legacy of Hitler and Nazi rule.

In this online version of this course visiting websites of museums and memorial sites, getting virtual tours of such places, and speaking with experts working on these sites will be an essential part.

Student Profile        

We welcome students from all disciplines who are interested in gaining an insight into the operations and dynamics of Nazi rule in Germany, its attempt to annihilate the Jews and to dominate the continent.

Prerequisites

Students should be able to speak and read English at the upper intermediate level (B2), preferably even higher. Interest and curiosity for the course.

Required Language Skills

The language of instruction is English. Language proficiency on an advanced Intermediate level (Mittelstufe II) is a prerequisite for participation. For orientation purposes, you can assess your language skills here (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

General Requirements

Please make sure to be online approximately from 8 am CET to 12:30 pm CET on the respective course days! Therefore, please check the possible time difference between Germany and your country of residence.

We also recommend that you make sure to have a quiet and appropriate working space.

To ensure a comfortable learning environment for all, please adhere to general netiquette rules.

Technical Requirements

  • stable internet connection
  • fully functional device, such as computer, laptop or tablet (use   of smart phones not recommended), headset recommended
  • recommended operating systems: Windows 7 or higher or Mac OS X 10,13 or higher, avoid using a VPN

Course Requirements        

Attendance in class (online), the careful reading of the assigned course materials, the discussion of the material in class, the completion of three short response papers (approx. 1000 words each), and the final examination in form of one short essay (approx. 3000 words). Guidelines for the papers as well as suggested topics will be provided during the first session.

Grading       

  • 20% Class participation
  • 40% Three response papers
  • 40% Essay

Reading        

A course reader will be provided online as PDF file. This includes a recent monograph on Nazi Germany, a selection of articles offering the newest research and insights, excerpts from original documents (in translation), a weekly schedule of the readings and a series of questions as a guide through each of the texts.

In addition to these courses, there will also be a comprehensive orientation with an introduction to the technical environment.