GERM 310

Green Germany: Nature and Environment in German Culture

Being `green¿ is not a new trend for Germans. In fact, Germany has consistently led the way, not only within Europe but also throughout the world, in how to be environmentally friendly and natural resource conscious. Germany is (and has been) a world leader in solar and wind technologies and boasts one of the smallest carbon footprints of any industrialized major economy in the world. Why are Germans so `green¿? What is Germany¿s position on today¿s major debates surrounding global warming, climate change, conservation, urban planning, public transportation, sustainable agriculture, and environmental protection? How do Germans see themselves vis-à-vis nature as represented in the arts? In this course students explore these and other questions related to nature and the environment from a German perspective, from the mid-eighteenth century through today. The course introduces students to a wide variety of subject matter and topics in literature, film, news items/current events, science, art, politics, language, and contemporary consumerism. The course also highlights the university city of Freiburg in Baden-Wurttemberg, often called Germany¿s ¿greenest city,¿ as a special case study for our theme ¿Grunes Deutschland.¿