Thanks to Clarissa for highlighting this article, which has been removed from the paywall. In my graduate program, some courses were all theory and no content, others historical materialism, others cultural studies. My own academic work has some structuralist inflections, but also treats Kafka’s stories as if they are real. Thoughts on whether my approach to seduce more Americans to the Deutsch Side is valiant, or in the immortal words of FULLPROF, high-school level platitudes?
Rebecca Schuman has published a very interesting article in Chronicle of Higher Ed about the prospects of salvaging the field of Germanic Studies from disappearing into oblivion. The article offers an impressive contrast with the poorly written, extremely predictable and painfully embarrassing stuff CHE has been publishing lately, so do read it.
What I like the most about the piece is that it outlines a project that used to be my own but that was almost completely beaten out of me in grad school:
So here is my new mission: I want to inspire everyone to see that although worthwhile as entertainment and edification, German literature also provides praktische Erkenntnis (practical insight) into more-successful living. For example, also in Faust, the title character’s deal with Mephistopheles brings into stark relief an important point about boundless ambition at any cost. And we can recognize Gregor Samsa, the cockroach-esque monster from Kafka’s Metamorphosis, as a cautionary…
View original post 360 more words