Study of the family (especially grandparents) as a crucial but ambivalent site of the transmission of the past and how its stories differ from public narratives: sometimes offering alternative access to repressed histories and other times covering them up. Examples principally from the postwar German cultural context, with special attention to the dynamics at play in (not) remembering National Socialism and the Holocaust. Introduces students to central concepts from Memory Studies, such as cultural and communicative memory. No prior knowledge required. Taught in English.
German 261: Inheriting the Past: History, Memory, Family
Instructor: Yasemin Yildiz