German 59: Holocaust in Cinema and Literature

Instructor: Todd Presner

This course approaches the Holocaust by examining the challenges and problems encountered in trying to imagine and understand it through literature, film, and a wide range of primary historical sources. We will read and look at some of the most significant literary, historical, filmic, and philosophical representations of the Holocaust, including those by Elie Wiesel, Primo Levi, Hannah Arendt, Ruth Kluger, Art Spiegelman, Paul Celan, Nelly Sachs, Steven Spielberg, and Claude Lanzmann. The course treats a broad range of issues such as the politics of memory, the value of testimony, the problems of witnessing, and the ethics of representation. Fulfills the GE requirement for “Literary and Cultural Analysis” and Philosophical and Linguistic Analysis, and the Diversity Requirement.