Course Details

Course offered Autumn 2020

HONORS 210 B: Cultural Memory and the Politics of Time and Space (A&H, DIV)

HONORS 210 B: Cultural Memory and the Politics of Time and Space (A&H, DIV)

SLN 16127 (View UW registration info »)

Susanne Rinner (Germanics)

Credits: 5
Limit: 38 students

Honors Credit Type

4 seats reserved for incoming freshmen
3 additional seats added (38 total limit)

In the sciences, memory is understood as the individual’s capacity (or failure) to remember. This course examines the importance of remembering (and forgetting) in the cultural realm, specifically the memory contests of the 20th century in Germany. This interdisciplinary course investigates notions of memory and of remembering and forgetting in German culture in a variety of representational modes (prose, film, museums, and memorials). Memory has emerged as one of the most vibrant interdisciplinary fields of study. Traditionally, memory is understood within its temporal dimension as a way to reconstruct the past in the present for future purposes. Increasingly, memory is also investigated as rooted in space. Space preserves memories, and space can be utilized to make memories visible and to shape their meaning. This course focuses on Germany, its history since 1871, and its present situation within Europe and the world in order to introduce students to the interdisciplinary field of memory studies. Students will read foundational texts that constitute the field of memory studies. In four case studies, we interpret a novel (Barbara Honigmann, A Love Made Out of Nothing), a feature film (The Lives of Others), a monument (the Memorial for the Murdered Jews in Europe), and two museums (The Jewish Museum and the German Historical Museum, both located in Berlin) within the context of the theoretical readings.