German Department


The Thesis in German

The writing of the thesis is the culmination of the German major at Reed. It allows students to bring the analytical skills and cultural competence acquired at Reed and (in most cases) in Germany to bear on a specific project of their interest. The small size of the department enables us to work closely with students and help them devise highly individual projects. Thesis topics may be chosen from any literary or intellectual German tradition. The two different tracks (German literature/German culture studies) do not imply two entirely different sets of themes and methodologies. The culture-studies track requires a greater knowledge of another discipline while allowing students to work primarily with German material in English translation. Students of both tracks are encouraged to try interdisciplinary approaches and, most importantly, engage in critical self-reflection on their approach.

Recent Thesis Topics

Life and Theatre -and Painting, and Fiction, and-: A Categorical Analysis of Charlotte Salomon's 'Leben? oder Theater?' - Mollie Anderson (2019)

Taking the Public for a Walk: Publics Unleashed in the Work of Christoph Schlingensief - Alex Chao (2016)

Perspective in the Interpretation of Franz Kafka's Die verwandlung - Roman Michael Garcia (2016)

The Will to Remember: Representations of the Nazi Past in Jenny Erpenbeck's "Heimsuchung" and Christian Kracht's "Faserland" - Ben DeYoung (2015)

The Brothel of the Bourgeois Imagination: Frank Wedekind's "Frülings erwachen: eine kindertragödie (Spring Awakening: A Children's Tragedy)" - Gabriel C. Andreen (2014)

The Village and the City in the Works of Herta Müller - Christopher Ray Muñoz-Calene (2014)

Correspondences: the Reconstruction of a Women's Romantic Literary Tradition in the Works of Karoline von Günderrode, Bettine von Arnim, and Christa Wolf - Simon Friedland (2013)