Aims/Description: This module traces the idea of nationhood and community across genres (including fiction and non-fiction), looks at cultural stereotyping and critical perspectives in TV, film, or audio documentaries, and examines a range of historical sources in order to unpack the ideologies and critiques of national identities such as 'German-ness', 'Swissness', and 'Dutchness'. Critically drawing on Benedict Anderson's influential concept of 'imagined communities', we will be asking questions like: what happens when shared, commonplace narratives of nation-ness are turned into advertising copy? How is our understanding of other countries shaped by our national self-understanding (and vice versa), and to what extent can the tourist be seen as a 'Kitsch-Mensch'? What are the competing visions of community in today's multicultural Germany? In preparation for your own year abroad, you will reflect on popular perspectives on nationhood from an academic distance (via an essay), and will yourselves engage in cultural mediation and critique (through a project, which includes translation).  

Staff Contact: WILLIAMS SEAN M
Teaching Methods: Seminars, Independent Study
Assessment: Course work

Information on the department responsible for this unit (Languages and Cultures):

Departmental Home Page
Teaching timetable


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Teaching methods and assessment displayed on this page are indicative for 2021-22. Students will be informed by the academic department of any changes made necessary by the ongoing pandemic.

Western Bank, Sheffield, S10 2TN, UK