University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

The graduate program emphasizes seminars that provide an in-depth study of specialized areas in German literature, culture, and language. Instruction in methodology is provided for graduate student instructors and prospective teachers, and seminars in applied linguistics and second-language acquisition provide a theoretical and practical foundation for teachers. The program aims at comprehensive historical knowledge of German literature and culture and/or linguistics and is designed to train students in rigorous scholarship, original research, and independent thinking.

Students are not admitted solely to pursue a master of arts, which is an integral part of the PhD program.

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Admission to the University

Minimum Requirements for Admission

The following minimum requirements apply to all graduate programs and will be verified by the Graduate Division:

  1. A bachelor’s degree or recognized equivalent from an accredited institution;
  2. A grade point average of B or better (3.0);
  3. If the applicant comes from a country or political entity (e.g., Quebec) where English is not the official language, adequate proficiency in English to do graduate work, as evidenced by a TOEFL score of at least 90 on the iBT test, 570 on the paper-and-pencil test, or an IELTS Band score of at least 7 (note that individual programs may set higher levels for any of these); and
  4. Sufficient undergraduate training to do graduate work in the given field.

Applicants Who Already Hold a Graduate Degree

The Graduate Council views academic degrees not as vocational training certificates, but as evidence of broad training in research methods, independent study, and articulation of learning. Therefore, applicants who already have academic graduate degrees should be able to pursue new subject matter at an advanced level without need to enroll in a related or similar graduate program.

Programs may consider students for an additional academic master’s or professional master’s degree only if the additional degree is in a distinctly different field.

Applicants admitted to a doctoral program that requires a master’s degree to be earned at Berkeley as a prerequisite (even though the applicant already has a master’s degree from another institution in the same or a closely allied field of study) will be permitted to undertake the second master’s degree, despite the overlap in field.

The Graduate Division will admit students for a second doctoral degree only if they meet the following guidelines:

  1. Applicants with doctoral degrees may be admitted for an additional doctoral degree only if that degree program is in a general area of knowledge distinctly different from the field in which they earned their original degree. For example, a physics PhD could be admitted to a doctoral degree program in music or history; however, a student with a doctoral degree in mathematics would not be permitted to add a PhD in statistics.
  2. Applicants who hold the PhD degree may be admitted to a professional doctorate or professional master’s degree program if there is no duplication of training involved.

Applicants may apply only to one single degree program or one concurrent degree program per admission cycle.

Required Documents for Applications

  1. Transcripts: Applicants may upload unofficial transcripts with your application for the departmental initial review. If the applicant is admitted, then official transcripts of all college-level work will be required. Official transcripts must be in sealed envelopes as issued by the school(s) attended. If you have attended Berkeley, upload your unofficial transcript with your application for the departmental initial review. If you are admitted, an official transcript with evidence of degree conferral will not be required.
  2. Letters of recommendation: Applicants may request online letters of recommendation through the online application system. Hard copies of recommendation letters must be sent directly to the program, not the Graduate Division.
  3. Evidence of English language proficiency: All applicants from countries or political entities in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English language proficiency. This applies to applicants from Bangladesh, Burma, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Latin America, the Middle East, the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, most European countries, and Quebec (Canada). However, applicants who, at the time of application, have already completed at least one year of full-time academic course work with grades of B or better at a US university may submit an official transcript from the US university to fulfill this requirement. The following courses will not fulfill this requirement:
    • courses in English as a Second Language,
    • courses conducted in a language other than English,
    • courses that will be completed after the application is submitted, and
    • courses of a non-academic nature.

If applicants have previously been denied admission to Berkeley on the basis of their English language proficiency, they must submit new test scores that meet the current minimum from one of the standardized tests.

Where to Apply

Visit the Berkeley Graduate Division application page

Admission to the Program

The Department of German accepts applications for its degree program beginning in September for admission to the following fall semester. Applications must be submitted online no later than December 15. The department does not admit for the MA as a final degree, although the MA will be awarded to students pursuing work toward the PhD after fulfillment of the requirements. Applicants who hold an MA in German may apply directly to the PhD program.

Graduate Application and Supporting Documents Graduate Division Application

The online application is available after September 6 via the Graduate Division website.

The program requires GRE scores (general test), or TOEFL (international students), a statement of purpose, a personal statement, and critical writing samples (in either or both German and English.) Writing samples should be in the form of thesis or research paper on a topic relevant to the fields of German literature or linguistics (limited to 25 pages).

For the purpose of campus-wide fellowship competitions, applicants who submit the statement of purpose or personal history statement in German should also submit an English version of both.

Applications are accepted for fall term only.

Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Application

It is recommended that you fill in the GSI application section with your online graduate application. All graduate students teach as part of the graduate program, and teaching positions are awarded at the time of admission. Teaching experience is not required.

Doctoral Degree Requirements

Normative Time Requirements

Normative Time to Advancement

The total normative time to advancement is four years.

Normative Time in Candidacy

The total time in candidacy is two years.

Total Normative Time

The total normative time of the program is six years.

Time to Advancement


Courses Required
Basic Requirements
Select one of the following:3-4
Middle High German for Undergraduates
Old High German
GERMAN 207Methods4
GERMAN 270History of the German Language4
Comprehensiveness Requirements
Five (5) graduate GERMAN courses, selected in consultation with faculty advisers in view of the desired specialization and in view of the historically comprehensive QE and the PhD20
Further Specialization
Electives chosen in the fields of specialization and outside interests (Joint PhD/Designated Emphases)
Exam preparation

Foreign Languages

There are two options to fulfill the language requirement. Students are strongly encouraged to acquire a useful reading knowledge in two languages other than English and German (Option I). Many of our students choose French, Latin, Dutch, Italian, Russian, Japanese, or Turkish. If students choose to learn only one language other than English and German, they are required to demonstrate exceptional proficiency in this language (Option II). The language requirement must be fulfilled prior to the QE. 

Designated Emphasis

Graduate students may add a designated emphasis to their plans of study to gain a particular area of specialization. The DE is usually added before a student advances to candidacy. DE in Dutch Studies, Critical Theory, Renaissance & Early Modern Studies, Film & Media Studies, New Media, Women, Gender & Sexuality; concurrent PhD in Medieval Studies.

MA Examination

The MA examination is a written exam based on a text on methodological questions, or on linguistic problems from the student’s main field of interest.
 The student will choose an examination committee consisting of three members, communicate an area of interest, and submit a list of works already read. The committee will choose an exam question, a text, or a linguistic problem from the area of interest and communicate it to the student two weeks before the examination. In response to the question the student will write an essay in a three-hour time period. The committee will meet with the student to discuss the examination and the student’s progress in the program. The faculty will decide whether the student will be invited to proceed to doctoral work in the program.

Please note that the department does not admit for the MA as a final degree, although the MA will be awarded to students pursuing work toward the PhD after fulfillment for the MA requirements.

PhD Qualifying Exam 

The PhD qualifying examination, or QE, consists of a written portfolio submitted to the student’s committee and a three-hour oral examination. In the year before the QE, the student should decide on an exam committee of three faculty members from the department and one faculty member from outside the department. This committee must be approved by the head graduate adviser six months before the exam is to take place.

The student prepares a reading list for the exam. The reading list should show historical breadth and also highlight texts within the student’s area of interest. Students generally choose a theme for their exams, to help make it easier for them to simultaneously showcase breadth and their research interest. The reading list must be approved by the QE committee chair a month after the committee has been approved by the graduate adviser.

In consultation with the committee, the student will write a research proposal for the exam. This proposal usually follows the student’s exam topic as a red thread through German literary history. The research proposal must be submitted to the committee by the first week of the semester in which the QE is to take place.

The student must also turn in two revised papers from seminars they have taken in the department (Option I) or write two three-hour exams (Option II). Most students choose Option I. These are to be turned in to the committee with the research proposal and a final draft of the reading list.

The QE is a three-hour exam, if the student passes the exam, he or she will advance to candidacy.

Prospectus Conference 

By the end of the semester after the QE, the student will submit a prospectus and any other work completed on the dissertation to the dissertation committee. The dissertation committee will meet with the student to discuss progress and to offer advice. Annually thereafter, it is required that at least two members of the committee confer with the student, in addition to regular meetings with the dissertation chair.


Final requirement to complete the PhD is completion of a dissertation. Students should meet with their dissertation chairs to decide on appropriate timelines for research abroad and the completion of individual chapters. Students are not required to defend the dissertation once the dissertation committee has decided the dissertation is finished.

Teaching Opportunities

The following links contain information that you may find helpful during your graduate studies at Berkeley:

Teaching and Research Opportunities

Academic Student Employment
What you need to Know About Being a GSI, GSR, Reader, or Tutor
Labor Relations
Academic Appointments Office (for general policies and procedures)


Select a subject to view courses


GERMAN 201B Major Periods in German Literature: 16th and 17th Century 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Fall 2011, Spring 2010
Recommended for M.A. candidates.

Major Periods in German Literature: 16th and 17th Century: Read More [+]

GERMAN 201D Major Periods in German Literature: 19th Century 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2015, Spring 2012
A study of pivotal literary texts, including works by Goethe, Novalis, Holderlin, Heine, and Nietzsche.

Major Periods in German Literature: 19th Century: Read More [+]

GERMAN 202A Early German Literature: Early German Literature, from the Middle Ages to the Baroque 4 Units

Terms offered: Not yet offered
This course provides an overview of major canonical works of Medieval and Early Modern German literature.

Early German Literature: Early German Literature, from the Middle Ages to the Baroque: Read More [+]

GERMAN 202B Classical German Literature 4 Units

Terms offered: Not yet offered
Broadly defined as the period from 1750 to 1900 – through the lens of current theoretical concerns and the latest criticism. Departing from traditional schemes of periodization (Enlightenment, Classicism, Romanticism, Realism etc.) as well as from conventional analytical categories, we will revisit some of the most seminal texts in German literature as test cases for alternative historical narratives and new critical idioms. Canonical texts prove to be open to
entirely new readings in light of contemporary theory. Conversely, they also help us elaborate, revise, and perhaps move beyond current theoretical paradigms. Critical texts are meant to showcase the state of the art and to inspire future research projects.

Classical German Literature: Read More [+]

GERMAN 202C Modern German Literature 4 Units

Terms offered: Not yet offered
The seminar will focus on concentrated readings of selected passages from modernist German literature, ranging from Heinrich von Kleist, Robert Walser, Rainer Maria Rilke, Carl Einstein and Franz Kafka to Thomas Mann, Robert Musil, Ingeborg Bachmann, and Thomas Bernhard. Although the emphasis will be on fictional prose, we will also discuss theories of reading and modernist poetics. Our goals are to study the literary styles of modern German writers and to practice
reading skills that draw equally on aesthetics, rhetoric, literary theory, and media history. The teaching will be explorative, interactive, non-hierarchical, and collaborative.
Modern German Literature: Read More [+]

GERMAN 204 Compact Seminar 2 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
A compact seminar designed to feature distinguished short-term visitors from German-speaking countries who have expertise in German literature and culture to teach topics that complement regular departmental offerings. One short paper is required. Taught in German.

Compact Seminar: Read More [+]

GERMAN 205 Studies in Medieval Literature 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2015
So-called ‘mystical’ forms of thought and experience have played a major role in the history of modern philosophy and literature from Hegel to Georg Lukàcs, Martin Heidegger, Georges Bataille, and Jacques Derrida, and from Novalis to Robert Musil, Paul Celan, Ingeborg Bachmann, Pierre Klossowski, and John Cage (to name just a few). In this seminar we will read and discuss key texts written by Eckhart of Hochheim (Meister Eckhart), Mechthild
of Magdeburg, and Hadewijch of Antwerp, some of the most significant medieval figures in this tradition. During a second phase of the seminar we will turn our attention to baroque mysticism, especially Angelus Silesius and Jacob Böhme.
Studies in Medieval Literature: Read More [+]

GERMAN 206 Studies in the Early Modern 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2016, Spring 2009, Fall 2002
Survey of texts from the 15th and 16th centuries. A good reading knowledge of Middle High German is recommended.

Studies in the Early Modern: Read More [+]

GERMAN 207 Methods 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Fall 2015, Fall 2014
Drawing on a variety of literary texts, periods, and genres, this seminar will present and explore different ways of reading. Topics will include literary hermeneutics and textual deconstruction.

Methods: Read More [+]

GERMAN 210A Studies in the 18th Century: Age of Enlightenment 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2009, Fall 2003
. Literary texts will be studied as historical documents illuminating changes in literary theory and in religious and philosophical thought during the Enlightenment. Texts by Lessing, Herder, and Lenz, and some Storm and Stress plays.

Studies in the 18th Century: Age of Enlightenment: Read More [+]

GERMAN 212A Studies in the 19th Century: Topics in Romanticism 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2013, Fall 2008, Spring 2003
Major authors and texts of the romantic period will be discussed.

Studies in the 19th Century: Topics in Romanticism: Read More [+]

GERMAN 214 Studies in the 20th Century 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2016, Fall 2015

Studies in the 20th Century: Read More [+]

GERMAN 255 Interpretation and Criticism of Poetry 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Fall 2010, Spring 2007

Interpretation and Criticism of Poetry: Read More [+]

GERMAN 256 Problems of Literary Theory 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2016
Topics vary from year to year. For current topic see the department's "Course Descriptions" booklet.

Problems of Literary Theory: Read More [+]

GERMAN 260 Aesthetic Theory 4 Units

Terms offered: Not yet offered
Aesthetics is crucial to most of the humanities disciplines. This seminar studies the historical development as well as the key concerns of aesthetic theory from its eighteenth-century beginnings to the present day. The focus is on the classical age of aesthetics from Baumgarten to Nietzsche. We’ll first read the foundational texts by Kant, Schiller, the Romantics, and Hegel, among others. We then turn to the ramifications of, and challenges to, the theoretical
positions developed in the classical age, exploring the scientific, sociological, and media-theoretical discourse of aesthetics in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, as well as the interventions of major philosophers such as Heidegger and Adorno.
Aesthetic Theory: Read More [+]

GERMAN 263C Poetry and Thought 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Fall 2013, Fall 2012
This seminar examines the interrelationship of poetic and philosophical discourses, with an emphasis on roles and functions of language. Questions of style and writing will interrelate different genres of poetry and thought. The seminar will explore a tradition in which poetic thought and highly reflective poetry approach and at times merge with each other.

Poetry and Thought: Read More [+]

GERMAN 265 Film Theory: Historical and Systematic Perspectives 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
This seminar will examine traditional and recent critical approaches to the study of film. Knowledge of German and background in literary theory required.

Film Theory: Historical and Systematic Perspectives: Read More [+]

GERMAN 266 Interdisciplinary Summer Seminar in German Studies 4 Units

Terms offered: Summer 1996 10 Week Session, Summer 1995 10 Week Session, Summer 1994 10 Week Session
Consisting of reguar meetings and discussions as well as weekly lectues by distinguished speakers from various disciplines, the seminar will explore instuitutional, political, social, and cultural aspects of the former two Germanies grappling with an ambiguous heritage. Within this framework participants will pursue individual directions in research. Topic varies from year to year.

Interdisciplinary Summer Seminar in German Studies: Read More [+]

GERMAN 268 Aspects of Literary and Cultural History 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2013, Fall 2011, Spring 2011
A comparison of literary and cultural developments in Germany and the United States. Emphasis is placed on individual research designed to develop teaching materials.

Aspects of Literary and Cultural History: Read More [+]

GERMAN 270 History of the German Language 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
Designed for students interested in the history of the language and culture of united Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein, which transverses a rich legacy from the , through Luther and Grimm, to Grass and . Discussion, via linguistic principles, of language processes in the genetic development of the German language, as well as its interchange over time with closely and remotely related languages.

History of the German Language: Read More [+]

GERMAN 271 Comparative Germanic 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2015, Spring 2009, Spring 2004
Advanced topics in Germanic phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics. The principal Germanic dialects viewed within laryngeal theory and reconstruction.

Comparative Germanic: Read More [+]

GERMAN 273 Gothic 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Fall 2012, Spring 2010
Study of the linguistic structures of the earliest Germanic dialect with a sizable corpus. Indo-European origins, Germanic relationships, and Gothic as a synchronic construct are considered.

Gothic: Read More [+]

GERMAN 276 Old High German 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Fall 2014, Spring 2012
Reading of poetic and prose texts in Old High German. The synchronic and diachronic study of the dialects of the High German language from the eighth to the eleventh century within the framework of current linguistic method.

Old High German: Read More [+]

GERMAN 280 North Sea Germanic 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2018, Fall 2013, Fall 2010
Readings and discussion of poetic and prose texts in the Ingwaeonic languages (broadly construed) not covered elsewhere: Old Low Franconian, Middle Dutch, Old Frisian, Middle Low German.

North Sea Germanic: Read More [+]

GERMAN 282 Old Saxon 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Spring 2013, Spring 2011
Study of the most provocative of the major Germanic languages in terms of structural identification. The literary and ethnographic setting of the and its shared isogrammar.

Old Saxon: Read More [+]

GERMAN 285 Approaches and Issues in the Study of Modern German 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Fall 2014, Fall 2011
A survey of relevant contemporary issues and topics in linguistic research on the structure of German.

Approaches and Issues in the Study of Modern German: Read More [+]

GERMAN 290 Seminar in German Linguistics 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2016
Variable topic. For specific topic contact departmental office.

Seminar in German Linguistics: Read More [+]

GERMAN 291 Methods and Issues in German Morphology 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2014, Fall 2008, Spring 2005
The seminar will deal with the methods and results of morphological analysis as applied to the German language. It will introduce basic concepts and means of morphological analyses, as well as study and apply various theories of word structure to German. The primary concern will be the synchronic analyses of modern German word formation, but questions of a diachronic nature as well as ones about inflection will also be discussed.

Methods and Issues in German Morphology: Read More [+]

GERMAN 292 German Syntax 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2016, Spring 2012, Fall 2006
Discussion of current syntactic theories as applied to a number of issues in modern German syntax with an eye toward their description and explanatory potential. Typological comparison, especially with English.

German Syntax: Read More [+]

GERMAN 293 German Semantics 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Fall 2012, Spring 2009
Concentration on the essential categories of semantics via data from German and Germanic. Extensive discussion of semantic change, the semantics of prevarication, and the semantics of pathological language.

German Semantics: Read More [+]

GERMAN 294 Contrastive Grammars 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2013, Fall 2010, Fall 2007
Theory and methods of contrastive linguistic analyses. Study of pairs of contrastive language sets in two time perspectives: Modern German with Modern English and Early New High German with Early New English.

Contrastive Grammars: Read More [+]

GERMAN 296 Semiotics 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2010, Spring 2009, Spring 2008
Discussion of the principal figures from the basic disciplines of philosophy, biology, and linguistics influential in current trends in semiotics. Application of Peircean semiotics to a wide range of semiotic modalities.

Semiotics: Read More [+]

GERMAN 298 Directed Group Study 2 - 8 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Summer 2018 8 Week Session, Spring 2018

Directed Group Study: Read More [+]

GERMAN 299 Individual Study for Graduate Students in Literature and Linguistics 2 - 12 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017
Primarily for post-M.A. students engaged in exploration of a restricted field, involving writing of a report, and for students writing their doctoral dissertations.

Individual Study for Graduate Students in Literature and Linguistics: Read More [+]

GERMAN 375A Seminar in Foreign Language Pedagogy: Teaching College German I 3 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
The course focuses on the theory and practice of foreign language pedagogy. It introduces students to second language acquisition research and its relationship to pedagogy, providing a basis for staying theoretically informed and for participating in professional discourse of the field throughout one's teaching career. It also emphasizes critical reflection on pedagogical practices. Includes a practical component dealing directly with the day-to-day
challenges of teaching elementary German.
Seminar in Foreign Language Pedagogy: Teaching College German I: Read More [+]

GERMAN 375B Seminar in Foreign Language Pedagogy: Teaching College German II 3 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2016, Spring 2015, Spring 2014
This course expands upon the basis of methodology and theory of language teaching covered in 350 and prepares students for teaching at the intermediate level. The theoretical and practical exploration of recent developments in second language teaching concentrates on instructional technology, teaching writing, teaching literary texts, and curriculum design. Students reflect on their development as teachers through a journal, video, and observation
of their teaching, and the final portfolio.
Seminar in Foreign Language Pedagogy: Teaching College German II: Read More [+]

GERMAN 602 Individual Study for Doctoral Students 1 - 8 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2017
Independent study in consultation with graduate adviser to provide an opportunity for Ph.D. students to prepare for the qualifying examination.

Individual Study for Doctoral Students: Read More [+]


YIDDISH 101 Elementary Yiddish 5 Units

Offered through: German
Terms offered: Fall 2018, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
Introduction to Yiddish language and literature. Attention to reading, writing, and speaking in the context of the historic Yiddish cultural environment.

Elementary Yiddish: Read More [+]

YIDDISH 102 Intermediate Yiddish 5 Units

Offered through: German
Terms offered: Spring 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2016
Further intensive study of Yiddish, building on the foundation established in 101. Advanced grammar and introduction to the reading of original texts.

Intermediate Yiddish: Read More [+]

YIDDISH 103 Readings in Yiddish 3 Units

Offered through: German
Terms offered: Fall 2018, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
Study of selected Yiddish texts including prose, poetry, and drama, from various periods and geographic areas, in the context of time and place. Review of relevant grammatical topics. Increased attention to the Hebrew/Aramaic component. Selections may vary from semester to semester.

Readings in Yiddish: Read More [+]

Faculty and Instructors

+ Indicates this faculty member is the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award.


Jeroen Dewulf, Associate Professor. Dutch studies, transatlantic slavery, German literature, European Studies, post-colonial studies, hybridity.
Research Profile

Karen Feldman, Associate Professor. Critical theory, aesthetics, literary theory, Kant, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Arendt, Benjamin, 18th-20th century German thought, Hegel, Adorno.
Research Profile

Deniz Gokturk, Associate Professor. German literature, German cinema, transnational cinemas, German-Turkish-European-American intersections in cinema, performance and spectatorship and reception, intertextuality and intermediality and translation, the politics and poetics of migration and globalization, urban imaginaries and mediations of place, theories of diversity and nationalism, comedy and community, modern rituals of regulating identity and authority and mobility.
Research Profile

Anton Kaes, Professor. Film studies, modern literature, literary and cultural theory, cinema, interdisciplinary and comparative aspects of Weimar culture, contemporary literature and film, literary theory, theory of cultural studies, film history, film theory, history of cinema.
Research Profile

Winfried Kudszus, Professor. Psychoanalysis, semiotics, culture, literature, philosophy, psychology.
Research Profile

Niklaus Largier, Professor. Religion, literature, German, history of medieval and early modern German literature, theology, mysticism, secularism, senses, sensuality, history of emotions, passions, asceticism, flagellation, sexuality.
Research Profile

Irmengard Rauch, Professor. Semiotics, Germanic linguistics, linguistic archeology, paralanguage, Old Saxon, Old Frisian, linguistic fieldwork, socio-cultural and cognitive approaches to language variation and language change, contrastive analysis and linguistic methodology, Gothic, Modern High German and its dialects, Old/Middle High/Early New High German.
Research Profile

Thomas F. Shannon, Professor. Linguistics, control, German, Dutch, syntax, phonology, naturalness, syllable structure, complementation, ergative phenomena, passivization, perfect auxiliary selection, word order, processing factors syntactic phenomena, cognitive, functional grammar, corpus.
Research Profile

Chenxi Tang, Associate Professor. European intellectual history, German literature from the eighteenth to the early twentieth century, political and legal thought, cultural theory, early modern European literature, Europe and China.
Research Profile

Elaine C. Tennant, Professor. German, Habsburg court society in the early modern period, the development of the German language at the end of the middle ages, the Middle High German narrative tradition, literary and cultural traditions of the holy roman empire, European reactions.
Research Profile

Affiliated Faculty

Judith Butler, Professor. Critical theory, gender and sexuality studies, comparative literature, 19th and 20th century continental philosophy, social and political thought, philosophy and literature.
Research Profile

Pheng Cheah, Professor. Nationalism, rhetoric, legal philosophy, feminism, 18th-20th century continental philosophy & contemporary critical theory, postcolonial theory & anglophone postcolonial literatures, cosmopolitanism & globalization, social & political thought.
Research Profile

John Connelly, Professor.

John M. Efron, Professor. Cultural and social history of German Jewry.
Research Profile

Beate Fricke, Associate Professor. Medieval art and architecture, idolatry, iconoclasm, history of allegory, formation of communities, incest, anthropophagy, animation, emergence of life and procreation, theories and practices in use of images and relics, visual and material culture, Carolingian Art, Gothic Art, Ottonian Art.
Research Profile

Hannah Ginsborg, Professor. Philosophy, Kant and on Kantian themes in contemporary epistemology and philosophy of mind.
Research Profile

Mel Gordon, Professor.

Stefan-Ludwig Hoffmann, Associate Professor. Modern German and European History, Conceptual History, Transnational History, urban studies.
Research Profile

Martin E. Jay, Professor. Rhetoric, history, Marxist theory, European intellectual history, 19th 20th century, visual discourse and culture.
Research Profile

John Lindow, Professor Emeritus. Old Norse-Icelandic literature, Scandinavian folklore, Finno-Ugric folklore, Pre-Christian religion of the North, Scandinavian mythology.
Research Profile

Linda H. Rugg, Professor. Scandinavian, Swedish literature and culture 1870 to the present, August Strindberg, Ingmar Bergman, visual autobiography, literature and the visual arts, ecology and culture, film, whiteness studies.
Research Profile

Hans Sluga, Professor. Political philosophy, recent European philosophy, history of analytic philosophy, Frege, Wittgenstein, Foucault.
Research Profile

Gary B. Holland, Professor Emeritus. Historical linguistics, Indo-European linguistics, poetics, early Indo-European languages, linguistic typology, historical syntax, history of linguistics.
Research Profile


Yael Chaver, Lecturer.

Nikolaus Euba, Lecturer.

Harriett Virginia Ann Jernigan, Lecturer.

Esmee Van Der Hoeven, Lecturer.

Visiting Faculty

Charlton Payne, Visiting Researcher.

Emeritus Faculty

Bluma Goldstein, Professor Emeritus.

Gerd Hillen, Professor Emeritus.

+ Claire Kramsch, Professor Emeritus. Language, culture, pragmatics, society, education, applied linguistics, aesthetics, literacy, second language acquisition, language pedagogy, language in discourse, hermeneutic approaches to language learning.
Research Profile

Joseph Mileck, Professor Emeritus.

Klaus Mueller, Professor Emeritus.

Hinrich C. Seeba, Professor Emeritus. 18th 20th century German literature & culture, intellectual & institutional, enlightenment, Napoleonic era, vormarz, concepts & images history, role language nationalism, contemporary trends German literature, representations urban space.
Research Profile

Johan P. Snapper, Professor Emeritus. Dutch studies.
Research Profile

Frederic C. Tubach, Professor Emeritus.

Contact Information

Department of German

5319 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-643-2004

Fax: 510-642-3243

Visit Department Website

Department Chair

Deniz Göktürk, PhD

5416 Dwinelle Hall

Fax: 510-642-3243

Head Graduate Adviser

Chenxi Tang, PhD

5331 Dwinelle Hall

Graduate Student Affairs Officer

Andrea Rapport, MA

5307 Dwinelle Hall

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