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German studies


German studies is the field of humanities that researches, documents, and disseminates German language and literature in both its historic and present forms. Academic departments of German studies often include classes on German culture, German history, and German politics in addition to the language and literature component. Common German names for the field are Germanistik, Deutsche Philologie, and Deutsche Sprachwissenschaft und Literaturwissenschaft. In English the terms Germanistics or Germanics are sometimes used (mostly by Germans), but the subject is more often referred to as German studies, German language and literature, or German philology.

Modern German studies is usually seen as a combination of two sub-disciplines: German linguistics and Germanophone literature studies.

German linguistics is traditionally called philology in Germany, as there is something of a difference between philologists and linguists. It is roughly divided as follows:

In addition, the discipline examines German under various aspects: the way it is spoken and written, i.e., spelling; declination; vocabulary; sentence structure; texts; etc. It compares the various manifestations such as social groupings (slang, written texts, etc.) and geographical groupings (dialects, etc.).

The study German literature is divided into two parts:Ältere Deutsche Literaturwissenschaft deals with the period from the beginnings of German in the early Middle Ages up to post-Medieval times around AD 1750, while the modern era is covered by Neuere Deutsche Literaturwissenschaft. The field systematically examines German literature in terms of genre, , content, and motifs as well as looking at it historically by author and epoch. Important areas include edition philology, history of literature, and textual interpretation. The relationships of German literature to the literatures of other languages (e.g. reception and mutual influences) and historical contexts are also important areas of concentration. The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory: Fourth Edition () is printed in English but contains many German-language literary terms that apply cross-culturally in the field of literary criticism; quite a few of the in terms in the book originated in German but have since been adopted by English-language critics and scholars.



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Library guides
  • Linguistics of German (Sprachwissenschaft)
  • German language and literature of up to about 1750 (Ältere Sprache und Literatur)
  • German language and literature since approximately 1750 (Neuere Literaturwissenschaft)
  • Specifics of the didactics of teaching German (Fachdidaktik)
  • Department of German, University of Oxford
  • Department of German, University of Cambridge
  • Department of German Studies, University of Warwick
  • Department of German, National University of Ireland – University College Cork, Cork, Ireland [28]
  • Atlas Deutsche Sprache [CD-ROM]. Berlin: Directmedia Publishing. 2004.
  • Hartweg, Frédéric G.: Frühneuhochdeutsch: eine Einführung in die deutsche Sprache des Spätmittelalters und der frühen Neuzeit. Tübingen: Niemeyer. 2005.
  • Die Deutschen Klassiker (CD-ROM).
  • Berman, Antoine: L'épreuve de l'étranger. Culture et traduction dans l'Allemagne romantique: Herder, Goethe, Schlegel, Novalis, Humboldt, Schleiermacher, Hölderlin. Paris, Gallimard 1984. .
  • Burger, Harald: Sprache der Massenmedien. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. 1984.
  • Ernst, Peter: Germanistische Sprachwissenschaft. Wien: WUV. 2004.
  • Hickethier, Knut: Film- und Fernsehanalyse. Stuttgart, Weimar. 1993.
  • Hickethier, Knut (ed.): Aspekte der Fernsehanalyse. Methoden und Modelle. Hamburg: Lit Verlag. 1994.
  • Hohendahl, Peter U. German Studies in the United States: A Historical Handbook. New York: Modern Language Association of America, 2003. Print.
  • Kanzog, Klaus: "Einführung in die Filmphilologie". Munich. 1997.
  • Muckenhaupt, Manfred: Text und Bild. Grundfragen der Beschreibung von Text-Bild-Kommunikation aus sprachwissenschaftlicher Sicht. Tübingen: Gunter Narr Verlag. 1986.
  • Prokop, Dieter: Medienproduktanalyse. Zugänge – Verfahren – Kritik. Tübingen: Gunter Narr Verlag.
  • Beutin, Wolfgang: Deutsche Literaturgeschichte: von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart. Stuttgart: Metzler. 1992.
  • Fohrmann, Jürgen and Wilhelm Voßkamp (eds.): Wissenschaftsgeschichte der Germanistik im 19. Jahrhundert. 1994.
  • Marven, Lyn: Body and narrative in contemporary literatures in German : Herta Müller, Libuse Moníková, and Kerstin Hensel. 2005.
  • Shitanda, So: "Zur Vorgeschichte und Entstehung der deutschen Philologie im 19. Jh.: Karl Lachmann und die Brüder Grimm," in Literarische Problematisierung der Moderne, ed. by Teruaki Takahashi. 1992.
  • Bogdal, Klaus-Michael, Kauffmann, Kai, and Mein, Georg (unter Mitarbeit von Meinolf Schumacher und Johannes Volmert): BA-Studium Germanistik. Ein Lehrbuch. Reinbek bei Hamburg: Rowohlt. 2008
  • Schumacher, Meinolf: Einführung in die deutsche Literatur des Mittelalters. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft. 2010
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