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Twilight of Modernity: Art and Culture in the Weimar Republic
GRST 275
Spring 2007 not offered
Crosslisting: COL 276, GELT 275

This course investigates the cultural and artistic productions of the now legendary Weimar Republic (1918-1933), Germany's first, and ultimately unsuccessful, experience with democracy, imposed by the victors in the First World War, rife with political turmoil, afflicted with the shock of hyper-inflation, and destroyed by the rise of Nazism. Cultural life during this period--which had its magnetic center in the young and chaotic metropolis of Berlin--resembled a dynamic (and explosive) laboratory of modernity that is best studied by looking at both "high" and "low" culture, including literature, journalism, music, cultural theory, and the visual arts. Through the comparison of a variety of documents, we will examine the differing and often conflicting incarnations of modernity characteristic of this period. For example, we will look at the how the artistic technique of montage migrated from Dada and the cinema to the novel (Alfred Döblin's Berlin Alexanderplatz) and other kinds of avant-garde writings (Walter Benjamin's One-Way Street). Other possible topics include: the rapid development of new media technologies and the concomitant revolutionary changes in perception; the aesthetic exploration of the unconscious; the assertion of a previously taboo range of gender identities; the emergence of proletarian mass culture and its theory; the "Frankfurt School" and the critique of modernity.

Essential Capabilities: None
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA GRST
Course Format: Lecture/DiscussionGrading Mode: Student Option
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (GRST-MN)(GRST)

Last Updated on FEB-21-2024
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