Slavic Languages and Literatures | THE WANDERING JEW: JEWISH WRITERS FROM CENTRAL EUROPE AND EXILE
S540 | 31627 | Volkova


This course leads the student through the tempestuous 20th century
fate of Central European Jewry. It starts with the social and art
situation of pre-WWI, the central role of Vienna and the cultural
environment which constituted a sense of home and rootedness for
Jewish artists and intellectuals of the area. Subsequently, the course
pursues the different solutions sought by Jews under the pressures of
what they perceived as lost homeland after 1918 and fierce
anti-Semitism rapidly developing in Europe. The course focuses both on
lesser known and world-renowned writers of the area, who wrote
predominantly in German, often spent substantial parts of their lives
in more than one country and mostly ended up dispersed all around the
world, carrying their Central European heritage with them. The
transformation of the issue of exile will be a major focus of this
class. Among the world-renowned writers to be studied in the course
are Franz Kafka, Franz Werfel, Peter Weiss, the Nobel Prize Laureate
Elie Wiesel, and the Pulitzer Prize winner Saul Friedlander, to name
but a few. Indirect and direct approach to exile, inner and outer
exile, roots and aftermath will be examined. All texts will be read in
English translation. The class is intended for graduate students and
advanced undergraduates with serious interest in literary history.

Requirements: full discussion participation, extensive class reporting.


Contact Professor Volkova before signing up!