GERM-433 Literature of Migration
Fall for 2013-2014
Turkish-Germans and Turks living in Germany together comprise Germany’s largest ethnic minority group. Beginning in the 1960s, so-called Gastarbeiter were recruited from Turkey to provide labor needed to fuel Germany’s postwar Wirtschaftswunder. Turkish immigrants introduced ethnic, religious, and economic difference into a German society that had been radically homogenized as a result of Nazi genocide.
Although it was originally assumed that the residence of Turkish “guest workers” would only be temporary, many chose instead to bring their families to join them, and to relocate permanently to Germany. As this new group struggles to define its place in German society, competing models have been submitted for how this might best be accomplished. German reactions, meanwhile, have ranged from the exclusionary practices of reactionary xenophobia to progressive struggles in support of an integrated society welcoming of diversity.
Using literature, film, and the press, we will examine important moments and key social debates in the history of this struggle.
Primary course readings will be in both English and German (approximately 70 pages per week). Class discussion will be conducted in German, and all written work will be submitted in German.
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