Module Identifier GE35020  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Dr Jane Wilkinson  
Semester Semester 1  
Pre-Requisite Eligibility for entry to Level 3 German  
Course delivery Lecture   10 lectures of 1 hour each  
  Seminars / Tutorials   10 seminars of 1 hour each  
  Workload Breakdown   Formal tuition: 20 hours; preparation specifically for classes: 20 hours; assessment (preparation and writing) 20 hours; examination: 2 hours; private study: 138 hours.  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours 2 questions60%
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay (continuous assessment)30%
Semester Assessment 1 x assessed group presentation (continuous assessment)10%
Supplementary Exam2/3 Hours 1 x 2-hour examination if continuous assessment submitted. 1 x 3-hour examination if no continuous assessment submitted.100%

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
1. analyse and evaluate the ways in which multicultural Germany is represented in a range of texts and films.

2. critically compare the depiction of multicultural Germany in the work of German and foreign authors and directors.

3. demonstrate a critical understanding of the problems facing multicultural Germany and the depiction of these problems in literature and film.

4. reflect critically on the cultural construction and expression of German and foreign identities in the selected case-studies.

5. identify ways in which cultural production could be used to ease tensions between German and minority communities.

6. express themselves clearly, coherently and in a logical fashion orally and in writing.

7. demonstrate the ability to carry out independent research.


The introduction of this module will widen the range of options available to Level 3 students of German. It will complement Dr Davies's sociolinguistic modules by giving students the opportunity to study twentieth-century literature and film. It will also build on students' existing knowledge of German culture and society by focusing on the important issues of immigration and multiculturalism which have shaped German society in recent decades. It presupposes no particular knowledge of multicultural Germany.

Brief description

In the latter half of the twentieth century, after bringing in large numbers of 'guest workers' from southern and eastern Europe and opening its borders to political asylum, Germany became a multicultural society. Inevitably, the presence of a large number of foreigners has had considerable impact, both positive and negative, on Germans' sense of national identity. Equally, the foreign communities themselves have struggled to find and express their own cultural identities which remain 'in between' cultures. These issues have been increasingly reflected in literature and film since the 1960s, above all in the cultural production of the minority communities themselves. Through a number of literary and filmic case studies, this module will thus introduce students to the history and politics of multicultural Germany and the representation of this multicultural society on screen and in writing by Germans and resident foreigners.


1. Introduction to multicultural Germany 1: A history of migration
2. Introduction to multicultural Germany 2: Issues facing today's multicultural society.
3. German responses 1: Rainer Werner Fassbinder's film 'Angst essen Seele auf'.
4. German responses 2: Dea Loher's play 'Fremdes Haus'.
5. Turkish-German literature 1: Emine Sevgi Ozdamar's 'Mutterzunge: Erzahlungen'.
6. Turkish-German literature 2: Aras Oren's 'Berlin Savignyplatz'.
7. Turkish German film 1: Tevfik Baser's '40m2 Deutschland'.
8. Turkish German film 2: Fatih Akin's 'Kurz und schmerzlos'.
9. Comparison of German and foreign depictions of multicultural Germany.
10. The future of multicultural Germany.

Module Skills

Problem_solving Students will learn to work through problems of methodology which arise when comparing literature and film and when studying contemporary culture which is constantly changing.  
Research skills Students will be required to find, evaluate and use source materials (primary and secondary).  
Communication Students will be expected to communicate in seminars both informally and in an assessed presentation, as well as to write at an appropriate level for assignments.  
Improving own Learning and Performance Students will be able to observe the improvement in their own competence in analyzing, interpreting and comparing literary texts and films.  
Team work Students will be expected to work in groups during seminars and in their own time and will thus develop team skills in dividing up and organizing work.  
Information Technology Students will be expected to use the internet to access current articles and websites on multicultural Germany. There will also be the opportunity to use programs such as PowerPoint in seminar presentations and written assignments will be word processed.  
Application of Number Not directly addressed in this module.  
Personal Development and Career planning Not directly assessed in this module.  
Subject Specific Skills Linguistic competence will be developed through reading texts and watching films in German. Students will learn new vocabulary specific to the topic of multicultural Germany.  

Reading Lists

** Should Be Purchased
Özdamar, Emine Sevgi (1990) Mutterzunge: Erzählungen Verlag Kiepenheuer & Witsch, Köln
Loher, Dea (1996) Fremdes Haus Verlag der Autoren, Frankfurt am Main
** Recommended Text
Akin, Fatih (1998) Kurz und Schmerzlos (FILM) (can be studied in Language Resource Centre)
Baser, Tevfik (1986) 40m2 Deutschland (FILM) (can be studied in Language Resource Centre)
Fassbinder, Rainer Werner (1974) Angst essen Seele auf (FILM) (can be studied in Language Resource Centre)
** Recommended Background
Alba, Richard; Schmidt, Peter; Wasmer, Martina (eds) (2003) Germans or Foreigners? Attitudes Towards Ethnic Minorities in Post-Reunification Germany Palgrave MacMillan, New York
Anderson, Susan The German Quarterly 'Outsiders, Foreigners and Aliens in Cinematic or Literary Narratives by Bohm, Dische, Dörrie, and Ören.' vol 75, no 2, pp 144-159..


This module is at CQFW Level 6