German Culture I

A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course analyses several documents (texts, videos, pictures, movies, etc.), in order to highlight some of the most significant features of the contemporary German culture. It pays specific attention to the historical changes and the transformation of the German society during the last decades.
Expected learning outcomes
Students will acquire basics and specific terms about German culture; they will also develop a discriminating attitude towards documents in German, maturing autonomous skills of comprehension, analysis, interpretation and contextualisation of significant cultural phenomena.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
IMPORTANT: all the most important information will be provided through the ARIEL website of the course (Cultura tedesca I MED - )

Teaching methods: Lecture will take place remotely in both synchronous and asynchronous (PowerPoint presentation with audio) mode through the use of the MSTeams platform. In order to promote socialization between students, lectures will also include moments of discussion / group work. Whether possible lessons in attendance will be organized and made remotely available to those who cannot come to class.

Readings and assignments: To integrate distance learning additional materials could be made available during the course.

Assessment methods and Criteria: The written intermediate tests (2) will be held remotely through the use of the MS Teams platform.
Course syllabus
The course consists of three units, which will be addressed in sequence:

Unit 1
The German-speaking countries from 1945 to nowadays
The unit examines - also using examples from literature, cinema and visual arts - the history of Germany (with particular attention to the division between the Federal Republic and the Democratic Republic), Austria and Switzerland after the end of the Second World War, focusing on political and social events that have helped shape the culture of these countries.

Unit 2
The German-speaking countries today
The teaching unit analyzes the contemporary reality of Germany, Austria and Switzerland with particular attention to the territory, the state, political, economic and social system, education, cultural life and customs and traditions of the three countries.

Unit 3
Guilt and responsibility: the German population and the crimes of WW2
The unit examines the ways in which the German population processed the National Socialist past, and in particular the crimes committed during this period, from the end of World War II to the present day. After following a historical path based on critical and literary sources, the course will then focus on the reflection on this topic by the generation of so-called 'grandchildren', examining a work - "Heimat" by Nora Krug - belonging to a 'young' and intermedial genre such as the graphic novel.

This syllabus is valid until September 2021.
Prerequisites for admission
General knowledge of the European history of the 20th and 21st century.
Teaching methods
The course adopts the following teaching methods: lectures, plenary discussion in class.
Teaching Resources
Unit 1
- G. Corni, Storia della Germania. Da Bismarck a Merkel. Milano: Il Saggiatore, 2017 - Chap. (7 optional) -8-9-10-11-12. [available as ebook]
- Materials available on the Ariel website - Cultura tedesca I MED.

For non-attending students, the following additional bibliography is provided:
- B. Maj, Heimat. La cultura tedesca contemporanea (2001). Roma: Carocci, 2015.

Unit 2
- F. Palermo / J. Woelk. Germania. Bologna: Il Mulino (2005). [available as ebook and in the university ebook's database Darwinbooks]
- Tatsachen über Deutschland. Frankfurt am Main: FAZIT Communication GmbH in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Auswärtigen Amt, Berlin, 2018. (freely downloadable from the following address:
- Materials available on the Ariel website - Cultura tedesca I MED

For this unit there is no additional material for non-attending students.

Unit 3
- A reader containing all the materials covered by the unit will be made available on the Ariel website (Cultura tedesca I MED) and illustrated at the beginning of the course.
- G. Corni, Storia della Germania. Da Bismarck a Merkel. Milano: Il Saggiatore, 2017 - Chap. 6. [also available as ebook]
- Krug, Nora, Heimat. Ein deutsches Familienalbum. München: Penguin, 2018. (english versione: Krug, Nora, Heimat. A German family album. London: Particular books, 2018) [also available as ebook]

For this unit there is no additional material for non-attending students.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam will be divided into two parts: 1) intermediate written tests (multiple choice and open questions) related to the units 1 and 2 and 2) oral test (open questions aimed at testing the acquired knowledge and understanding and argumentation skills) relating in particular to the teaching unit 3.
The final grade is expressed in 30/30.

Students will be required to take an oral exam (open questions aimed at sounding out the acquired knowledge and understanding and argumentation skills) related to all 3 didactic units.
The final grade is expressed in 30/30.

Non-attending students are invited to come to office hours or to get in touch per email ( in order to receive specific instructions on how to prepare for the exam.
L-LIN/13 - GERMAN LITERATURE - University credits: 9
Lessons: 60 hours