Germanic Languages and Literatures Major

As a Germanic languages and literatures major, you will study the German language intensively and explore German literature and culture from the Middle Ages to the present. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to study German film, history, philosophy, and gender studies. Many German majors choose to study abroad, either for a semester or a full academic year.

sample courses:

German Literature and the Modern Era

Introduction in English to German writers from 1750 to the present. Discussion focuses on questions like the role of outsiders in society, the human psyche, technology, war, gender, the individual and mass culture, modern and postmodern sensibilities as they are posed in predominantly literary texts and in relation to the changing political and cultural faces of Germany over the past 250 years. Readings include works in translation by some of the most influential figures of the German tradition, such as Goethe, Kleist, Droste-Huelshoff, Kafka, Thomas Mann, Brecht, and Christa Wolf.

What Dreams May Come: Explorations of the Psyche in Viennese Modernism

This course investigates the relationship between the burgeoning field of psychoanalysis to modernist art and literature in Vienna at the beginning of the twentieth century. Examining literary texts and artworks alongside theories of dreams and the unconscious by thinkers such as Ernst Mach and Sigmund Freud, we analyze the ways that visual artists, composers and poets sought to divulge the inner workings of the psyche. Our discussion will focus on questions such as: what forms and what visual, aural and verbal languages were developed to represent subjective experience? How did theories of memory and trauma, and ideas about gendered psyches shape the depiction of individual agency in these works? What can these works tell us about the larger societal forces at play in this cultural moment?

our students have gone on to become:



Art Historians



International Affairs Experts

Jewish Studies Scholars