Humanities 220

Modern European Humanities

Spring 2017 Syllabus

Texts for this course

Flaubert, Madame Bovary; trans. Wall (Penguin)
Baudelaire, Flowers of Evil; trans. McGowan (Oxford UP)
Darwin, Darwin Reader; ed. Ridley (Norton)
Nietzsche, Genealogy of Morals; trans. Kaufmann (Knopf)
Conrad, Heart of Darkness (Norton)
Gauguin, Noa Noa (Dover)
Freud, The Freud Reader; ed. Gay (Norton)
Kafka, The Complete Stories' ed. Glatzer (Schocken/Knopf)
Fussell: The Great War and Modern Memory (Oxford)
Jünger, Storm of Steel; trans. Hofmann (Penguin)
Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway; ed. Hussey (Houghton Mifflin)
Kracauer, The Salaried Masses; trans. Hoare (Verso)
Arendt, Origins of Totalitarianism (Harcourt)
Browning, Ordinary Men (HarperCollins)
Levi, Survival in Auschwitz; trans. Woolf(Touchstone)
de Beauvoir, The Second Sex; trans. Borde and Malovany-Chevallier (Knopf/Doubleday)
Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism; trans. Pinkham (Monthly Review Press)


Week 1 (January 23)

  • Flaubert, Madame Bovary
  • M: Death by Irony / Hugh Hochman

Week 2 (January 30)

  • 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
  • M: Sign City: Baudelaire's Exile on Main Street / Hugh Hochman
  • W: Manet and Modernism / William Diebold

Week 3 (February 6)

  • Darwin, Origin of Species, selections (Darwin Reader pp. 95-120, 133-35, and 169-74)
  • Darwin, Descent of Man, selections (Darwin Reader pp. 175-77, 209-22, and 232-254)
  • M: On the Origins and Ends of Species / Benjamin Lazier

Week 4 (February 13)

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

Week 5 (February 20)

  • Conrad, Heart of Darkness
  • Chinua Achebe, "Image of Africa" (available in Norton edition of Heart of Darkness)
  • Gauguin, Noa Noa, pp. 5-52
  • Stephen Eisenman, excerpts from Gauguin's Skirt (e-reserves)
  • Image Gallery
  • M: Horror Story / Jay Dickson
  • W: Gauguin, Conrad, and Colonialism / William Diebold

Week 6 (February 27)

  • 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

Week 7 (March 6)

  • 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 8 (March 20)

  • 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 9 (March 27)

  • M: Clarissa Explains it All / Jay Dickson

Week 10 (April 3)

  • M: You Say You Want a Revolution/Leah Goldman
  • W: Getting Real with Socialist Realism/Leah Goldman

Week 11 (April 10)

  • 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 from the complete version of the film on YouTube linked here: 0-9:00; 12:00- 18:00; 31:23- 38:134; 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 12 (April 17)

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

Week 13 (April 24)

  • Aimé Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism
  • 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: Lecture on Césaire/ Katja Garloff and Hugh Hochman
  • W: It's a Man's Man's Man's World. Hunh?/ Benjamin Lazier