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Seminar Five - (Week 1) - Weimar Culture


  1. Why was the Weimar Republic such a fertile breeding ground for new ideas in the arts and sciences?
  2. Why did so many conservative German intellectuals regard these developments as symptoms of the ‘decline of Western civilization’?
  3. To what extent did literary and artistic Modernism reflect political and social change under the Weimar Republic?
  4. How and why did the lives of women and/or young people change during the Weimar Republic?


R. Burns (ed)* German Cultural Studies, chs. 1-2
P. Gay Weimar Culture
W. Melching ‘"A New Morality": Left-wing Intellectuals on Sexuality in Weimar Germany’, JCH 1990
D. Peukert The Weimar Republic, ch. 8
R.H. Samuel Expressionism in German Life, Literature and the Theatre
J. Weinstein The End of Expressionism. Art and the November Revolution in Germany, 1918-19
J. Willett The New Sobriety, Art and Politics in the Weimar Period, 1917-1933
________ The Weimar Years


R. Benson German Expressionist Drama
P. Jelavich Berlin Cabaret
J. Willett The Theatre of the Weimar Republic
W. v. Eckardt Bertolt Brecht’s Berlin. A Scrapbook of the Twenties
R. Hayman Brecht - a Biography
J. Willett The Theatre of Bertolt Brecht
M. Kane Weimar Germany and the Limits of Political Art. A Study of the Work of George Grosz and Ernst Toller
J. Willett The Theatre of Erwin Piscator


C. Bibsby Dada and Surrealism
A. Greenberg Artists and Revolution. Dada and the Bauhaus, 1917-1925
W. Rubin Dada and Surrealist Art


A. Döblin Berlin Alexanderplatz
H. Hesse Steppenwolf
F. Kafka The Trial
H. Mann Man of Straw
T. Mann Death in Venice


P. Coates The Gorgon’s Gaze. German Cinema, Expressionism and the Image of Horror
D. Cook A History of the Narrative Film, ch. 4
L. Eisner Fritz Lang
_________ The Haunted Screen
P. Monaco Cinema and Society: France and Germany during the Twenties
________ ‘Movies and National Consciousness in France and Germany in the Twenties’, in K.R.M. Short (ed.), Feature Film as History
P.M. Morris The Cinema of Fritz Lang
E. Rhode A History of the Cinema, pp. 156-207

Films in the Library (SRC):

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari; M; Metropolis; Nosferatu

Painting / Graphic Art

W. Bradley Emil Nolde and German Expressionism
B. Herbert German Expressionism - die Brücke and der Blaue Reiter
J. Lloyd German Expressionism
E. Siepmann Montage - John Heartfield
Bauhaus / Architecture
M. Franciscono Walter Gropius and the Creation of the Bauhaus in Weimar
B.M. Lane Architecture and Politics in Germany, 1918-1945
G. Naylor Bauhaus
F. Whitford Bauhaus