Ger 501: Appropriation of the Past: Tristan und Isolde: Vom Mittelalter bis zum 20. Jahrhundert
Spring 2021: This will be offered as an independent study, with fine-tuned assignments and requirements.
Instructor: Professor Albrecht Classen
Office: 318 LSB (you can always stop by whenever you like), but please wear a mask and watch social distancing
Office Hour: TT 9 a.m. - 10 a.m., and after appointment. I am regularly in my office 7/24
In Spring 2021, no in-person office hour. Call or email me, then I'll open a zoom meeting and let you in. Very flexible hours, always available for you. The link is below the signature line in my email.
Meeting Time: Wed. 3-5:30 p.m. via zoom.
We will meet online the entire semester, 2020, so I have created a zoom meeting, which you can access via D2L.
It will be available for us until the end of the semester. If we can meet in person, great, if not, then zoom.
- Face coverings are required in our classroom: Per UArizona’s Administrative Directive, face coverings that cover the nose, mouth, and chin are required to be worn in all learning spaces at the University of Arizona (e.g., in classrooms, laboratories and studios). Any student who violates this directive will be asked to immediately leave the learning space, and will be allowed to return only when they are wearing a face covering. Subsequent episodes of noncompliance will result in a Student Code of Conduct complaint being filed with the Dean of Students Office, which may result in sanctions being applied. The student will not be able to return to the learning space until the matter is resolved.
- The Disability Resource Center is available to explore face coverings and accessibility considerations if you believe that your disability or medical condition precludes you from utilizing any face covering or mask option. DRC will explore the range of potential options as well as remote course offerings. Should DRC determine an accommodation to this directive is reasonable, DRC will communicate this accommodation with your instructor.
- Physical distancing is required in our classroom: During our in-person class meetings, we will respect CDC guidelines, including restricted seating to increase physical distancing. Any student who does not maintain physical distance from others may be asked to immediately leave the learning space. Noncompliance may result in a Student Code of Conduct complaint being filed with the Dean of Students Office, which may result in sanctions being applied.
- Classroom attendance:
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- Equipment and software requirements: For this class, you will need daily access to the following hardware: [laptop or web-enabled device with webcam and microphone]; regular access to reliable internet signal; ability to download and run the D2L site (chatroom), and Top Hat LMS.
- For lecture recordings, which are used at the discretion of the instructor, students must access content in D2L only. Students may not modify content or re-use content for any purpose other than personal educational reasons. All recordings are subject to government and university regulations. Therefore, students accessing unauthorized recordings or using them in a manner inconsistent with UArizona values and educational policies are subject to suspension or civil action.
This course examines the meaning of the past for contemporary German literature and culture by way of focusing on one central strand from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century, the story of Tristan and Isolde. This has been widely received throughout the ages, and by way of reading representative texts, we can learn how concepts from the past continue to exert a deep influence on us today.
Student Learning Outcomes; By the end of the semester, students will be able to engage critically with the issue of how the literary history of the German Middle Ages has impacted all of German culture well into the present. You will know a solid selection of critical texts from the early 13th, 16th, 19th, and 20th centuries, and will have understood how to produce well-researched papers on the graduate level.
You can consult, in general for background and context:
1. A. Classen, Das deutsche Mittelalter in seinen Dichtungen. 4th ed. (Tucson: Fast Copy, 2009); online at: PDF (free)
2. Die deutsche Geschichte im Mittelalter - online at: http://www.stefanjacob.de/Geschichte/Unterseiten/Zeittafeln.php
Please make sure that you do not print out any of these class materials on departmental printers. We do not have the money for that and must strictly appeal to the honor system to abide by this rule.
Secondary Reading (recommended):
Gerd Althoff, Die Macht der Rituale: Symbolik und Herrschaft im Mittelalter (Darmstadt: Primus, 2003).
A. Classen, Verzweiflung und Hoffnung. Die Suche nach der kommunikativenGemeinschaft in der deutschen Literatur des Mittelalters. Beihefte zur Mediaevistik, 1 (Frankfurt a.M.-et al.: Peter Lang, 2002).
Michael Mitterauer, Warum Europa? Mittelalterliche Grundlagen eines Sonderwegs (Munich: Beck, 2003).
Horst Wenzel, ed., Gespräche - Boten - Briefe. Philologische Studien und Quellen, 143 (Berlin: Schmidt, 1997).
Hilkert Weddige, Mittelhochdeutsche: Eine Einführung (Munich: Beck, 1996).
See also the bibliography to be handed out in class.
* Attendance is a must, there will be only 15 meetings during the semester. I expect you to have read the assigned texts before we meet in class. More than two unexcused absences lead to an automatic E in the course, but simply communicate with me if you have some problems. See also below.
1.Oral report and written version in German: For M.A. students: focus on the primary text only and provide an introduction. For Ph.D. students: critical summaries of at least two recent scholarly articles on one or two of our texts discussed in class: oral report (ca. 10-15 minutes) and written summary, ca. 4 pp.: total: 15% - present orally, i.e., in rough brush strokes, giving us the main thesis, when we discuss that text (7.5%), the written version, expanded, please (with full reflections and a more extensive discussion), needs to be submitted before the end of the semester (7.5 %). Articles can be in English or German (or French, Spanish, Italian, as it so happens), must have been published after 1980, in print or online, must be by a serious scholar, including myself, of course. One of the articles and your summary must be in German. Purpose: we need to learn what various scholars have discovered about our texts. Write always in German.
2. Weekly report of our class discussion in writing (in German), like in a journal, always due every second Fri at 2 p.m., online, ca. 400 words, 7 times, in German. 25%
3. Two exams, with essay questions, 15% each = 30%
4. Final exam, also with essay questions = 30%
Attendance: I expect you to attend all classes. Only serious circumstances and professional reasons would justify an excuse. Remember, we are going to meet only once a week.
All holidays or special events observed by organized religions will be honored for those students who show affiliation with that particular religion. Absences pre-approved by the UA Dean of Students (or Dean's designee) will be honored.
The policy against plagiarism, etc., is in conformity with the Student Code of Academic Integrity. For policies against threatening behavior by students, see: http://policy.arizona.edu/threatening-behavior-students
Students with special needs who are registered with the S.A.L.T. Center (http://www.salt.arizona.edu) or the Disability Resource Center (http://drc.arizona.edu) must submit appropriate documentation to the instructor if they are requesting special accommodations.
Suggested additional Reading List (not necessarily in a chronological order, which should also serve you to prepare for the Master Exam, if you want me to be on your committee (which would be my pleasure):
1. Hartmann von Aue: Erec and/or Iwein
2. Nibelungenlied and Kudrun
3. Gottfried von Strassburg: Tristan
4. Wolfram von Eschenbach: Parzival and Willehalm -
5. Wernher der Gartenære: Meier Helmbrecht
6. some texts from Der Stricker
7. Hrotsvitha von Gandersheim
8. Mechthild von Magdeburg: Das fließende Licht der Gottheit
9. Hildegard von Bingen
10. Argula von Grumbach
11. Catharina Regina von Greiffenberg
12. Johannes von Tepl, Ackermann
13. Sebastian Brant: Narrenschiff
14. Konrad von Würzburg, Engelhard
15. Elisabeth von Nassau-Saarbrücken (one of her four novels)
16. Thüring von Ringoltingen, Melusine
19. Herzog Ernst
20. Oswald von Wolkenstein
21. Heinrich Kaufringer (Auswahl)
22. Minnesang (Walther von der Vogelweide, Johann von Botenlauben, Albrecht von Johannsdorf, Heinrich Morungen, etc.)
23. Heinrich Wittenwiler: Ring
24. Mai und Beaflor
25. Mauritius von Craun
26. Herzog Ernst
27. Georg Wickram
28. Hans Sachs
29. Martin Luther
30. Till Eulenspiegel
31. Sebastian Brant
32. Thomas Murner
33. Hans Wilhelm Kirchhof
34. Frau Ava
35. Hildegard von Bingen
36. Ulrich Bonerius
This class will be conducted mostly in German (in spoken and written form).
The schedule will be changed for the independent study: Meetings on Fri, 9-11 a.m.
Week 1: Intro (1-29-21)
Week 2-5: Feb. 5, 12 (I'll be busy; please communicate with me otherwise and keep reading (but we can probably meet in the afternoon), 19, 26, March 5: Gottfried von Strassburg
Week 6-8: March 12, 19, 26: Hans Sachs (alle diese Texte verlinkt, unten)
Week 9-11: April 2, 9: Richard Wagner
Week 12-14: April 15, 23, 30: Thomas Mann
Week 15: May 7: if possible, Wilhelm Schaefer
Requirements: Reading of those texts in German, active participation in the meetings, keeping a journal, submit every 2-3 weeks (ca. 4-5 pp., reflecting on the meeting and discussion), with the final journal a bit more comprehensive.
This schedule no longer applies.
Jan. 19: 1. Introduction; Historical and Cultural Time Frame of the Middle Ages: 2. study the intro to both of our textbooks; 3. consult the Handbook of Medieval Studies, ed. A. Classen, online in our library (search under title, 4. see my article on communication (and have it read, if possible, at least using the sub-heading). Meeting online on zoom.
March 9: Reading Day, no class
Geschichte: this refers to the online link, see above, textbooks, no. 4, but there are countless other options. We will discuss the time frame, the major cultural features, the literary history, genres); We read for today: Ludwigslied (example of Old High German Literature): for an English translation, see: https://sourcebook.stanford.edu/sites/all/modules/custom/vm/VersioningMachine/texts/lay_ludwig.html
1. Gottfried von Straßburg: please purchase this title in the bookstore.
Tristan und Isolde : Roman ; [mit dem Werkbeitrag aus Kindlers Literatur-Lexikon] / Gottfried von Straßburg. In der Übertr. von Dieter Kühn
Frankfurt am Main : Fischer-Taschenbuch-Verl., 2008
667 S. ; 19 cm
Fischer ; 90014 : Fischer Klassik
Werktitel der Teile/
Tristan, -, dt.
All other titles are available online below, for educational purposes only.
5. Hans Sachs 1
5a. Hans Sachs 2
Historische Balladen II; nicht dieses Semester)