Humanities 220

Modern European Humanities

Spring 2018 Syllabus


Hannah Arendt, Origins of Totalitarianism (Houghton Mifflin)
Charles Baudelaire, Flowers of Evil (Oxford)
Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex (Knopf Doubleday)
Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot (Grove Press)
Christopher Browning, Ordinary Men (Harper Collins)
Aime Cesaire, Discourse on Colonialism (Monthly Review)
Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness (Norton Critical Edition)
Paul Fussell, The Great War and Modern Memory (Oxford)
Peter Gay, ed., The Freud Reader (Norton)
Ernst Junger, Storm of Steel (Penguin)
Franz Kafka, Complete Stories (Knopf)
Siegfried Kracauer, Salaried Masses (Verso)
Primo Levi, Survival in Auschwitz (Touchstone)
Friedrich Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morals (Knopf)
Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway (Houghton Mifflin)


Week 1 (January 22)

  • Baudelaire, Flowers of Evil ("To the Reader," "The Albatross," "Correspondences," "A Hymn to Beauty," "A Carcass," "Invitation to the Voyage," "Spleen (IV)," "The Sun," "To a Woman Passing By," "The Swan”
  • Baudelaire, "The Painter of Modern Life," chapters 1-4 and 9-12 (e-reserves)
  • T. J. Clark, The Painting of Modern Life, chapter 2 (e-reserves)
  • Image Gallery
  • Gay Gullickson, “Introduction,” The Unruly Women of Paris (e-reserves)
  • M: Sign City: Baudelaire's Exile on Main Street / Hugh Hochman
  • W: Manet Lecture / Joanna Fiduccia
  • F: The Paris Commune: Contested Meanings in a Shared City / Mary Ashburn Miller

Week 2 (January 29)

  • M: Nature's Empire: Darwin and the Study of Man in Context / Mary Ashburn Miller
  • W: On the Origins and Ends of Species / Benjamin Lazier

Week 3 (Feb. 5)

  • Nietzsche, Genealogy of Morals
  • M: Lessons in Alien Horticulture / Benjamin Lazier

Week 4 (February 12)

  • M: Horror Story / Jay Dickson
  • W: Cubism lecture / Joanna Fiduccia

Week 5 (February 19)

  • Freud, The Freud Reader (selections determined by individual instructors; recommended texts include: "An Autobiographical Study;" "Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality;" "Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria (Dora);" "Civilization and its Discontents;" and "From the History of an Infantile Neurosis [Wolf Man]")
  • M: Reading the Unconscious / Katja Garloff
  • W: Lecture on Freud / Jan Mieszkowski

Week 6 (Feb 26)

  • Kafka, The Complete Stories (selections determined by individual instructors; recommended stories include: "Before the Law"; "The Judgment"; "The Metamorphosis"; "In the Penal Colony"; "A Report to an Academy")
  • M: Franz Kafka: Modernism and Displacement / Katja Garloff

Week 7 (March 5)

  • Fussell, The Great War and Modern Memory, pp. 3-51, 75-82, 169-190, and 326-335
  • Poems of WWI (e-reserves)
  • Jünger, Storm of Steel, pp. 5-33, 91-110, 224-56, and 274-89
  • Ernst Jünger, from "War as Inner Experience" (e-reserves)
  • M: An Event Without an Idea: The "Irony" of World War One / Mary Ashburn Miller
  • W: The Total War Experience / Jan Mieszkowski


Week 8 (March 19)

  • M: Clarissa Explains it All / Jay Dickson

Week 9 (March 26)

  • M: You Say You Want a Revolution / Leah Goldman
  • W: Lecture on Bolshevik Art and Culture, 1917-1921 / Lena Lencek

Week 10 (April 2)

  • Siegfried Kracauer, The Salaried Masses, pp. 25-59 and 68-106
  • Hannah Arendt, Origins of Totalitarianism, pp. 305-18, 323-33, 337-39, 351-54, 361-64, and 437-79
  • Triumph of the Will, dir. L. Riefenstahl (watch at least the following clips: 0-9:00; 12:00- 18:00; 31:23- 38:34; and 1:01:00-1:06:50)
  • M: The Weimar Republic: Political Culture and Cultural Politics / Benjamin Lazier
  • W: Totalitarianism, or the Night of the Living Dead / Benjamin Lazier

Week 11 (April 9)

  • M: The Holocaust and the Limits of Representation / Katja Garloff
  • W: How to Hate Nazis: Four Suggestions / Benjamin Lazier

Week 12 (April 16)

  • Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot
  • Aimé Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism
  • M: Lecture on Beckett / Maureen Harkin
  • W: A Humanism Made for the Measure of the World / Mary Ashburn Miller

Week 13 (April 23)

  • Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex, pp. 3-17, 46-75, 266-74, 468-85, 519-23, 638-45, 661-64, and 753-66
  • M: It's a Man's Man's Man's World. Hunh?/ Benjamin Lazier
  • W: The Ends of Humanities / HUM 220 Faculty Panel