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Preparatory reading

Guide for summer reading 2020


Please note: if you are studying German Language ab initio, you are not required to do any preliminary preparation/reading.


You will need the following:

  • Martin Durrell Hammer’s German Grammar and Usage (5th), (Hodder Education, London 2011)
  • Martin Durrell et al. Practising German Grammar (3rd), (Hodder Education, London 2011)


We recommend you get one of the following:

1) Collins German Dictionary

(a little more expensive than the Oxford Duden but highly recommended)

2) Collins German Dictionary and Grammar

(very user friendly, including additional grammatical information)

3) Oxford-Duden German Dictionary.

(also available on campus on-line)

4) Concise Oxford-Duden German Dictionary

Obviously the larger one is preferable, but no matter which of the two you acquire, make sure it is a revised edition with the new spellings.

If you already possess a large dictionary (e.g. Cassells or Langenscheidt) don’t worry. Stick with it and have a word with your language tutor at the beginning of term.

General Reading: Literature and Culture

Rob Burns (ed.) German Cultural Studies. An Introduction (Oxford Univ. Press)

This volume, a wide ranging analytical survey of German culture and society since 1871, contains contributions by members of the German Department. You are strongly recommended to acquire a copy.

Mary Fulbrook (ed.) Twentieth-century Germany (Arnold). A useful overview of various aspects of the history of the last century. Any reading you do should ideally focus on the post-1945 period, and could include the contribution on culture in the two Germanies (also written by a member of the department).

  1. H. Bruford, Germany in the Eighteenth Century (Cambridge, l965)

Eda Sagarra, A Social History of Germany 1648-1914 (London, 1977)

David Lodge’s The Art of Fiction (Penguin) is a useful introduction to ways of analysing literary texts. It will be especially helpful for students who have not studied literature or film at A level.

Modules in Literature and Culture

  • All students on single honours German Studies and ‘with’ degrees (such as German with Italian or Film Studies) will take both GE108 The Changing Face of Germany in Film & Text and GE109 Aspects of German Culture in the Age of Enlightenment.
  • Students on ‘and’ degrees (such as German and History or French and German) and with first subject German on the BA Modern Languages will take either GE108 The Changing Face of Germany in Film & Text or GE109 Aspects of German Culture in the Age of Enlightenment.
  • Students of German ab initio will take GE108 The Changing Face of Germany in Film & Text

GE108 The Changing Face of Germany in Film & Text

See module description at:

Suggested preparatory reading

The first written text for the first term is Heinrich Böll, Das Brot der frühen Jahre (dtv). We study this in week 4, so it will be useful if you have read it before you arrive. If you are a student of German ab initio, you will have access to English translations of this and other course texts when you arrive. You may also wish to read Bernhard Schlink, Der Vorleser (Diogenes), also available in English translation.

GE109 Aspects of German Culture in the Age of Enlightenment

See module description at:

If you wish to read some of this module’s primary texts before coming to Warwick, the three main works are Goethe, Die Leiden des jungen Werther; Lessing, Emilia Galotti; and Schiller, Kabale und Liebe. All of these are in inexpensive editions published by Reclam. We will also be looking at a selection of Goethe’s poetry taken from the Penguin edition Goethe: Selected Poetry (ed. D. Luke, Penguin Classics).