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Syllabus The Core of Europe: History and Challenges of the Franco-German Friendship - 54808
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Last update 24-07-2017
HU Credits: 2

Degree/Cycle: 2nd degree (Master)

Responsible Department: cont. german studies:politics, soc.&cult

Semester: 2nd Semester

Teaching Languages: English

Campus: Mt. Scopus

Course/Module Coordinator: Dr. Gisela Dachs

Coordinator Email:

Coordinator Office Hours: Wednesday 17.00-18.00 or by prior arrangement

Teaching Staff:
Dr. Gisela Dachs

Course/Module description:
Germany and France are often described as the ‘twin engine” or “core countries” of Europe. Both countries work indeed closely together on many levels. Their alliance is based on agreements and political vision. The course teaches the development of the special relations between France and Germany – from ‘hereditary enmity’ to reconciliation and the current partnership. It focuses on the principles, structure, practice and challenges of today’s multi-layered bilateral cooperation that has been key to furthering the ideals of European integration since its beginning.

Course/Module aims:
The course aims to transmit historical perspectives as well as contemporary challenges of the Franco-German alliance including political, cultural as well as linguistic approaches. It provides insights into both societies with an emphasis on mutual perceptions.

Learning outcomes - On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:
• To have good knowledge about the multi-layered processes of reconciliation leading to the current alliance between Germany and France.
• To assess similarities and differences between the two countries with respect to past and ongoing key issues.
•To be able to identify the uniqueness of the German-French alliance as well as its universal aspects potentially relevant for other rapprochements.
• To demonstrate how transnational practices and cooperation affect both societies
• To have a reflective view on the current state of the bilateral relations between France and Germany through the critical discussion of academic texts as well as news content.

Attendance requirements(%):

Teaching arrangement and method of instruction: The teaching combines theoretical and practical approaches including lectures, text discussion, presentations. It includes also a guest-lecture from an expert in the field.
The teaching combines theoretical and practical approaches including lectures, text discussion, presentations. It includes also a guest-lecture from an expert in the field.

Course/Module Content:
1st class 21.3.2018 Introductory course: going back to Charlemagne/Karl der Grosse
2d class 11.4.2018 “Hereditary enmity”: wars, prejudice and inferiority complexes
3d class 25.4.2018 “Reconciliation”: principles of the founding fathers of Europe
4th class 2.5.2018 „Special relationship”: structure and practices of the transnational alliance

5th class 9.5.2018 Defining common interests - French-German power couples

(Field Trip 10 – 18 May From Berlin to Paris, optional)

6th class 23.5.2018 Challenges: Gaps (1) - same words, different meanings
7th class 30.5.2018 Challenges: Gaps (2) - Same problems, different approaches
8th class 6.6.2018 The role of German/French Jews
9th class 13.6. 2018 Eurosceptics and the Franco-German couple
10th class 20.6.2018 The Germans, the French - and the US
11th class 27.6.2018 Concluding class: Future perspectives

Required Reading:
A full reading list will be provided at the beginning of the semester

Additional Reading Material:
See above

Course/Module evaluation:
End of year written/oral examination 0 %
Presentation 40 %
Participation in Tutorials 20 %
Project work 0 %
Assignments 40 %
Reports 0 %
Research project 0 %
Quizzes 0 %
Other 0 %

Additional information:
Regular attendance of and participation in class discussions is essential to success in this course. Absences must be cleared with the instructor in advance barring emergencies so appropriate make-up work can be assigned. The course is required as a preparation for the students who wish to participate in the study trip “From Berlin to Paris” in March 2018.

Requirements and Grading: Active participation (20 %) including reading of the required texts as listed with each class. For students who prefer to summarize instead the content of the reading material (at least twice) in a written form, this option is provided. One presentation (group project) related to a topic of the syllabus (40%). A written final assignment (2500 words without bibliography) in English focusing on one of the major themes of the course (40%). Alternatively, a research proposal can also be written instead.

The full, updated, obliging syllabus will be in moodle.

Students should follow the announcements in moodle.
Students needing academic accommodations based on a disability should contact the Center for Diagnosis and Support of Students with Learning Disabilities, or the Office for Students with Disabilities, as early as possible, to discuss and coordinate accommodations, based on relevant documentation.
For further information, please visit the site of the Dean of Students Office.