Featured Courses in European Studies

Spring 2012 European Studies Seminars

English/Comp Lit 306: Arthurian Legend: Medieval to Modern

TR 3:30-4:45, taught by Professor Anita Obermeier (


The Arthurian Legend has been the single most prolific literary motif in Western literature. This course will investigate this enduring strength and attraction of Arthurian legends from their pan-European beginnings in the medieval period to contemporary literature, popular culture, and film. We will read masterpieces from the Celtic tradition, Chrétien de Troyes, the French Lancelot-Grail Cycle, Wolfram von Eschenbach, Thomas Malory, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Mark Twain, Naomi Mitchison, and others. This way, we can observe how each version serves a new authorial, political, or cultural agenda—whether it is to establish a national foundation myth, to endorse specific religious values, to revive medieval values in an industrial age, or to challenge gender stereotypes in modern times. We will also focus on the evolution of other important Arthurian characters, such as Gawain, Tristan, Perceval, Morgan le Fay, Galahad, Merlin, Lancelot, and Guinevere.


Arch 462.002: Cities and Literature: Urban Change & Urban Narratives in Contemporary Europe

T 2:00-4:30, taught by Professor Eleni Bastea (,


This seminar will focus on literary reflections of the built environment in contemporary Europe. We define the built environment in a broad and inclusive way: rooms, houses and buildings, balconies and gardens, streets and cities, real and imagined, ancient and new.  We define literature broadly, as well, to include film and new media. We will examine how well-known, literary descriptions of buildings and cities affect the way we experience them as visitors and residents.  What is the impact of buildings on literature and what is the impact of literature on buildings?  What happens when the built environment is drastically altered because of new urban projects or other outside forces, such as war, population changes, etc.? How does memory mediate between what used to be there and what replaced it?  We will examine the following European cities: London, Paris, Berlin, Venice, Istanbul, Salonica, and Barcelona.


Requirements: 1. One 8-10 pp. illustrated paper (or visual project of equivalent depth) focusing on the urban history and literature of a specific city; 2. Frequent short, written essays; and 3. An oral presentation of your project.  No prerequisites.

Fall 2011 European Studies Seminars

French 465: Le cinema français  (taught in French)

W 16:00-18:30, taught by Professor Raji Vallury (


German 336: European Fairy Tales

TTh 11:00-12:15, taught by Professor Susanne Baackmann (

NOTE: This class will require an extra research paper to qualify as an ES seminar.


German 480.001: DDR Literatur und Kultur (taught in German)

M 16:00-18:30, taught by Professor Katja Schröter (

NOTE: Seminar counts for German major and minor. Also offered as GRMN 553. Instructor's permission required, minimum prerequisite GRMN302.


Was haben Till Lindemann, Paul van Dyk und die Prinzen gemeinsam?  Sicherlich nicht den Musikstil ...  In diesem Kurs werden wir uns bemühen, ein Bild der DDR zu erarbeiten, das zumindest im Ansatz die DDR in ihrer Komplexität zu erfassen sucht.  Dabei geht es vor allem darum, die Uneinheitlichkeit des geeinten Deutschlands zu verstehen, indem wir deren Ursachen analysieren.  Einerseits werden wir uns Texten widmen, die das Selbstverständnis der DDR ausdrücken.  Andererseits werden wir uns ebenfalls mit westlichen Modellen der Rezeption der DDR auseinandersetzen, die die DDR einerseits als Unrechtsstaat und andererseits als letzte Hoffnung einer linken Utopie verstehen.  Wir werden uns vor allem auf literarische, visuelle akonzentrieren, die das kulturelle und alltägliche Leben in der DDR darstellen.

Past Seminars in European Studies

English 451.001: Medieval Lyrics

Spring 2011, taught by Professor Anita Obermeier (


Arch 462/ArtH 429: Cities and Literature

Spring 2011, taught by Professor Eleni Bastea (


History 300.009/500.009, Comp Lit 384.009: GREECE AND TURKEY, 1922 -- PRESENT: FROM CONFLICT TO RAPPROCHEMENT

(cross-listed in History, Peace Studies, European Studies, Cultural Studies)

Fall 2010, taught by Professor Eleni Bastéa (,


History 311: HISTORY OF WWI

Fall 2010, taught by Professor Melissa Bokovoy (


Art History 429.001, Comp Lit 432.001: 18th CENTURY EUROPEAN ART

Fall 2010, taught by Professor Susanne Anderson-Riedel (


English 355:  Survey of the Enlightenment

Spring 2010, taught by Professor Carolyn Woodward (


History 300/500, Section 005:  History of Fascism

Spring 2010, taught by Professor Enrique Sanabria (


History 492:  Senior Seminar – Fall of Communism in Eastern Europe

Fall 2009, taught by Professor Melissa Bokovoy (


German 450.001: ST – Die Rote Armee Fraktion (taught in German)

Spring 2009, taught by Professor Katrin Schroeter (


Architecture 412.001: Seminar – European Capitals

Fall 2008, taught by Professor Eleni Bastea (


French 346/335; English/CompLit 335:  Why France Matters

Spring 2008, taught by Professor Steve Bishop (277-6344 or


English 455:  The Later British Enlightenment, 1730-1800 -- A “noble and uncommon union of science and admiration”?

Spring 2008, taught by Professor Carolyn Woodward (


English 452/552:  The Renaissance (and its Discontents)

Fall 2007, taught by Professor Carmen Nocentelli (


“Tolstoy -- Seminar in Comparative & Russian Literature”

taught by Professor Byron Lindsey


“Studies in British Romanticism”

taught by Professor Gary Harrison


“The French and the Not French”

taught by Professor Steve Bishop


“European Capitals in the 19th Century”

taught by Professor Eleni Bastea


“Studies in Romanticism: The Emergence of the Romantic Hero”

taught by Professor Gary Harrison



taught by Professor Walter Putnam


The Habsburg Connection -- Vienna - Madrid - Santa Fe

taught by Professor Peter Pabisch


Memories of Trauma: Europe and the Holocaust

taught by Professor Susanne Baackmann


“Welcome to the Euro: The European Union (EU) and the 'German Bloc'”

taught by Professor Peter Pabisch


“Immigrant and Indigenous European Identity"

taught by Professor Steve Bishop