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This course explores the major developments of German cinema--films, genres, stars, directors, critics, institutional frameworks, etc.--throughout the twentieth century. More specifically, this course will engage with issues relating to German film culture's negotiation of popular filmmaking and art cinema, of Hollywood conventions and European avant-garde sensibilities. Topics will include the political functions of German film during the Weimar, the Nazi, the postwar, and the postwall eras; the influence of American cinema on German film; the role of German emigres in the classical Hollywood studio system; and the place of German cinema in present-day Europe and in our contemporary age of globalization. Special attention will be given to the role of German cinema in building and questioning national identity, to the ways in which German feature films over the past seventy years have used or challenged Hollywood conventions to recall the national past and envision alternative futures. Films by directors such as Murnau, Lang, Sierck/Sirk, Siodmak, Wenders, Fassbinder, Herzog, and many others. All readings and discussions in English.
German 328/Film Studies 328/Complit 328/History 3282/Art History 328 / International Studies 3291
Papers and AssignmentsGrade Breakdown
Class participation, regular attendance, and rigorous attention to the assignments are expected. All papers and examinations must be completed and submitted on time to receive credit for the course. Extensions are only granted under exceptional circumstances and after prior consultation with the instructor. Scheduled film screenings should be regarded as required texts. Students will be asked to submit one critical research paper (10 pages). Topics and detailed instructions will be handed out after midterm. Students are required to consult about this paper with the instructor at least once during the semester. All papers will be due by 5 p.m. on April 27, 2000. There will be a midterm exam covering both the readings and the screenings up to that point. Every student will be asked to complete a film evaluation sheet for each film. This assignment is meant to help you focus on certain aspects of each film and prepare for discussion. The evaluations will be collected periodically throughtout the semester. All students in the course will be automatically signed up to a class listserv. Over the course of the semester, you will be required to make at least five email postings to the listserv. Three of these should be original reactions to course readings (ca. 500 words), and should be posted to the listserv by midnight on the night before the class session for which the readings are assigned. The other two postings should be responses to reactions posted by your classmates (ca. 300 words).Required Texts Research Paper: 30% Midterm Exam: 20 % Participation (including screening attendance): 30% Email Postings and Film Evaluation Notes: 20%
Most readings will be available in a reader to be purchased from the Bookstore. The following required book can also be purchased at the Bookstore: Eric Rentschler, The Ministry of Illusion: Nazi Cinema and Its Afterlife. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1996.
Tuesday/Thursday 2:30-4 pm
Wednesday 4 pm
T 4:15-5:30 & Th 4:15-5:30
Telephone & email
Ridgley 418, W 1:00-2:30 & Th 1:00-2:30
CINEMA TO WEIMAR EXPRESSIONISM
|1/19||SCREENING||Robert Wiene, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1919)|
|1/20||FILM||The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari|
|READING||Thomas Elsaesser, "Early German Cinema: A Second Life?,"
Second Life: German Cinema's First Decades. Ed. Thomas Elsaesser. Amsterdam:
Amsterdam UP, 1996. 9-37.
Lotte Eisner, The Haunted Screen. Berkeley: U of California P, 1994. 9-37.
Siegfried Kracauer, From Caligari to Hitler. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1947. 61-76
|1/25||FILM||F.W. Murnau, Nosferatu (1922)|
|READING||Thomas Elsaesser, "Social Mobilty and the Fantastic."
Angle 5.2 (1982): 14-25.
Thomas Elsaesser, "Film History and Visual Pleasure: Weimar Cinema." Cinema Histories, Cinema Practices. Ed. Patricia Mellencamp amd Philip Rosen. Fredrick: University Publications of America, 1984. 47-84.
|1/26||SCREENING||Fritz Lang, Metropolis (1927)|
|READING||Andreas Huyssen. "The Vamp and the Machine." After
the Great Divide. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1986. 65-81.
R. L. Rutsky. "Metropolis, Nazism, and Modernism." New German Critique 60 (fall 1993): 3-32.
|2/1||READING||Patrice Petro, Joyless Streets. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1989. 39-78.|
|2/2||SCREENING||Georg Wilhelm Pabst, Pandora's Box (1929)|
|READING||Patrice Petro, Joyless Streets. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1989. 3- 36.|
ATTRACTIONS: EARLY GERMAN SOUND FILM, 1929-1933
|2/8||FILM||Leni Riefenstahl, The Blue Light (1932)|
|READING||Eric Rentschler, Ministry of Illusion. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1996. 25-51.|
|2/9||SCREENING||Fritz Lang, M (1931)|
|READING||Anton Kaes, "The Cold Gaze: Notes on Mobilization and
Modernity." New German Critique 59 (summer 1993): 105-117.
Lotte Eisner, Fritz Lang. New York: Da Capo, 1976. 111-128.
OF ILLUSION: NAZI CINEMA, 1933-1945
|2/15||FILM||Hans Steinhoff, Hitler Youth Quex (1933)|
|READING||Eric Rentschler, Ministry of Illusion. Cambridge:
Harvard UP, 1996. 1-25.
Karsten Witte, "The Indivisible Legacy of Nazi Cinema." New German Critique 74 (spring/summer 1998): 23-30.
|2/16||SCREENING||Detlef Sierck, La Habanera (1937)|
|2/17||READING||Eric Rentschler, Ministry of Illusion. Cambridge:
Harvard UP, 1996. 125-145.
Klaus Kreimeier, The UFA Story. New York: Hill and Wang, 1996. 236-246.
|2/22||READING||Klaus Kreimeier, The UFA Story. New York: Hill and Wang, 1996. 274- 288. 289-302.|
|2/23||SCREENING||Veit Harlan, Jud Süss (1940)|
|2/24||READING||Linda Schulte-Sasse. Entertaining the Third Reich.
Durham: Duke UP, 1996. 47-91.
Eric Rentschler, Ministry of Illusion. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1996. 149-169.
IN HOLLYWOOD: GERMAN EXILE CINEMA, 1933-1955
|2/29||FILM||Michael Curtiz, Casablanca (1942)|
|READING||Jan-Christopher Horak. "German exile cinema, 1933-1950." Film History 8 (December 1996): 373-389.|
|3/1||SCREENING||Fritz Lang, Hangmen also Die (1943)|
|3/2||FILM||Hangmen also Die|
|3/2||READING||Lotte Eisner, Fritz Lang. New York: Da Capo, 1976. 221-238.|
IN DEMOCRATIZING GERMANY: THE 1940s AND 1950s
|3/14||READING||Eric Rentschler. "Germany: The Past That Would Not Go Away." World Cinema since 1945. Ed. William Luhr. New York: Ungar/Continuum, 1987. 208-251.|
|3/15||SCREENING||Wolfgang Staudte, The Murderer are Among Us (1946)|
|3/16||FILM||The Murderer are Among Us|
|3/16||READING||Heide Fehrenbach. Cinema in Democratizing Germany: Reconstructing National Identity after Hitler. Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, 1995. 1-12. 51-91. 148-168.|
AND BEYOND: THE NEW GERMAN CINEMA OF THE 1960s TO 1980s
|3/21||READING||Thomas Elsaesser, New German Cinema: A
History. New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1989. 1-35.
Eric Rentschler, ed. West German Filmmakers on Film. New York: Holmes & Meier, 1988. 1-7. 9-13. 111-112. 206-208.
|3/22||SCREENING||Alexander Kluge, Yesterday Girl (1966)|
|3/23||READING||Anton Kaes, From Hitler to Heimat. Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 1989. 3-35.|
|3/28||READING||Thomas Elsaesser, New German Cinema: A
History. New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1989. 117-150.
Eric Rentschler, ed. West German Filmmakers on Flm. New York: Holmes & Meier, 1988. 104-111. 115-118.
|3/29||SCREENING||Werner Herzog, Aguirre: The Wrath of God (1974)|
|3/30||READING||John Davidson, "As Others Put Plays on the Stage." New German Critique 60 (fall 1993): 101-130.|
|4/4||READING||Eric Rentschler, ed. West German Filmmakers
on Film. New York: Holmes & Meier, 1988. 42-45. 152-154.
Thomas Elsaesser, New German Cinema: A History. New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1989. 207-238.
|4/5||SCREENING||Wim Wenders, The American Friend (1977)|
|4/6||FILM||The American Friend|
|4/6||READING||Roger F. Cook and Gerd Gemünden, eds. The Cinema of Wim Wenders. Detroit: Wayne State UP, 1996. 9-30. 33-41.|
|4/11||FILM||Rainer Werner Fassbinder, The Marriage of Maria Braun (1979)|
|READING||Anton Kaes, From Hitler to Heimat. Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 1989. 73-103.|
|4/12||SCREENING||Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Lili Marleen (1981)|
|4/13||READING||David Bathrick, "Inscribing History, Prohibiting and Producing Desire." New German Critique 63 (1994): 35-53.|
ABOUT GERMANY"? GERMAN FILM AFTER UNIFICATION
|4/18||READING||Gerd Gemünden, "National Identity and Americanization in the Unified Germany." Framed Visions. Ann Arbor: Michigan UP, 1998. 195- 213.|
|4/19||SCREENING||Joseph Vilsmaier, Comedian Harmonists (1997)|
|4/20||READING||Wim Wenders, "Talking about Germany." The Cinema of Wim Wenders. Ed. Roger Cook and Gerd Gemünden. Detroit: Wayne State UP, 1996. 51-59.|
|4/26||SCREENING||Tom Tykwer, Run Lola Run (1998)|
|4/27||FILM||Run Lola Run|