Department of Germanic Studies

Hans-Bernhard Moeller

Professor EmeritusPh.D., German, University of Southern California, Los Angeles

Associate Professor Emeritus
Hans-Bernhard Moeller



Comparative, intercultural media and genre studies, especially in Central European and German-American Contexts. Exile literature and exile film.


GER 301 • Ger For Grad Stu In Other Dept

37705 • Fall 2010
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm BUR 232

German 301 is designed to teach graduate students from other departments how to read German for their own research purposes.  During the course, German grammar is presented systematically, together with exercises designed to practice translating the grammatical features that have just been learned.


Jannach, Hubert and Richard Alan Korb. German for Reading Knowledge.  5th ed. (required)

For your work, a good dictionary will be indispensable.  The following dictionaries are recommended:
HarperCollins German College Dictionary, 2nd ed., ISBN 0062708171
Collins German Unabridged Dictionary, 4th ed.,  ISBN 0062702351


•    Participation and attendance:     20%
•    Vocabulary and Grammar Quizzes:     30%
•    Hand-in homework:             20%
•    Translation project:            30%

PARTICIPATION AND ATTENDANCE: Your attendance and participation are essential for your success.  You need to be present in order to ask questions, to get answers to  those questions, and to diagnose where you have gaps to fill. Your questions help the instructor assess how to teach the class. Only unavoidable absences will be excused.  Students are responsible for the material covered in the class they missed. In the case of more than three unexcused absences, a grade of zero will be assigned for “participation and attendance” in the course.

HOMEWORK AND ASSIGNMENTS:  Daily assignments of grammar and translation exercises.  You should spend one to two hours preparation time for each hour of class time.  Students should write out all translations in a spiral or loose-leaf notebook, leaving every other line blank as to have space for writing in corrections. For hand-in homework, typed submissions (also to be double-spaced) are preferred and may be required of students with handwriting illegible to the instructor.

TRANSLATION PROJECT: Students will find a text from their field to translate during the semester. Your instructor will help you select a text to make sure it is appropriate for your level of proficiency. Texts should be between 1,000 and 1,500 words long (≈ 4-6 double-spaced letter format pages) and may be book reviews, excerpts from scholarly books or articles, or primary sources. Individual meetings will be scheduled during regular class time to discuss any problems and to monitor progress. By the end of the process students should have produced an idiomatic translation of a text in their field and will be graded on the basis of how complete, idiomatic, fluid and accurate it is.

PREREQUISITES:  Graduate standing.    NO AUDITORS are allowed in GER 301.

GER 301 is offered on a CREDIT/NO CREDIT basis (a score of 70% or above is required to pass).

NOTE:  Check with your individual departments regarding language requirements.  The Department of Germanic Studies does not set guidelines for individual degree requirements.

GRC 361E • German Cinema Since 1933

38020 • Fall 2010
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm BUR 337
(also listed as EUS 347)

Writing Flag course (formerly SWC)

Open to non-majors. Crisis and rebirth of the German film against the backdrop of Nazi Germany; propaganda versus exile; Berlin vs. Hollywood; the socio-economic base.  Mediology:  the specifically German symbiosis of TV and cinema.  Films by the "Altfilmer" and "New German Cinema", East and West German Cinema and social context.  With special attention to the aesthetics of the German New Wave and its forerunners:  the "epic demonstrative" film or counter-cinema.  The 80s/90s turn toward entertainment and international genre cinema.  Political unification and 21st century rejuvenation of German cinema.  

Rentschler, Eric, The Ministry of Illusion. Cambridge: Harvard, 1996.
Hake, Sabine. German National Cinema. N.Y. & London: Routledge, 2nd edition, 2008.
Allan, Sean &  John Sandford. DEFA, East German Cinema, 1999.
Class Package.

Viewing of one film a week outside of class.  Preparation and discussion (in English) of the required films. Three prècis, 2 reviews of 300 words each, outline, and 8-10 pg. paper. Students desiring extra credit:  Presentation of the short paper. Close reading of the short papers ( to serve as a basis for class discussion).    

Class Participation (contribution to discussion, questions asked, comments made) 20%
Papers (Précis: 3% each, Reviews: 5% each, Outline 1%, Paper 30%)    50%
Exams: (Quiz 5%, mid-semester, in-class dress rehearsal for the final 5%, Final 20%)  30%

Note:  More than 5 absences and late papers (-5% for each day) to affect your grade.
No late oral presentations.  Save your allowable absences for  emergencies

GER 363K • German Cinema Since 1933

38085 • Spring 2010
Meets TTH 930-1100 BUR 234

Please check back for updates.

GER 218 • Practice In Spoken German

38395 • Fall 2009
Meets MW 200pm-300pm BUR 232

GER 218: Conversation and Vocabulary Building

Unique: 38395

Semester: Fall 2009

Instructor: Dr. Moeller <> Burdine 326

Office hour: M 3-4:00, F 10:30-12:00 & by appointment

Meeting Room and Time: MW 2:00-3:00 in Burdine H. 232



The course is designed to cover vocabulary and improve the students’ basic facility with spoken and written German. It helps them to participate fully in classes where German is the language of instruction. Several methods of vocabulary building lead the students to an active control of the language and ease in expressing themselves in German. Review of grammar will be limited to specific points requested by class members  Tests will be given at bi- or tri-weekly intervals.  There is no final exam for this course.


The class period uses a core lesson plan (see syllabus) that I hope will serve everyone's needs and provide a consistent, predictable approach that allows students to prepare for class.  I request that you take notes in class on key words and related concepts. I may collect these notes occasionally at the end of class hours and return them next hour with notations about anything you missed or misunderstood.


Class package (Paradigm).

Recommended: any good German-English Dictionary or Wahrig: Deutsches Wörterbuch.


Homework and Assignments

For the assigned sections, learn the vocabulary and complete all fill-in exercises so they can be covered quickly in class. A conversation class by nature is less structured and more spontaneous than a grammar class. Still you try to anticipate what you would like to say in class. It may be necessary to deviate from this syllabus, but we will follow the chronology.



Class Participation                        20%

Class notes                                       5%

Homework & Essays             10%

Quizzes                                       60%

Interview                                              5%



Class Participation counts for 20% of the grade. Understand that you are expected to be in class regularly, be well prepared and participate actively and voluntarily. Preparing homework assignments is necessary to enable you to perform in and thereby contribute to the class.

Absences:  Limit of 3;  additional absences will affect your final grade.  This, like tennis, is also a practice class.  Late work -5% per day.

Participation grading profile:

A= very well prepared; volunteers consistently, often and productively.

B=well prepared; volunteers consistently but only 2-3 times per class.

C=sometimes not prepared; generally participates only when called on.

D=often unprepared to participate, costs class time.

F= not prepared; disinterested.




German 310, German 312K or the equivalent. With consent of the undergraduate adviser, may be taken concurrently with German 312K or the 

GRC 361E • German Film Comedy-W

38660 • Fall 2009
Meets MWF 100pm-200pm BUR 337
(also listed as EUS 347)

GRC 361E: German Film Comedy-W

Unique: 38660, Semester: Fall 2009

Instructor: Hans-Bernhard Moeller<> Burdine 326

Meeting Time and Room: MWF 1-2:00, Bur 337

Screenings:M 5:00-7:00 in Bur 337

Crosslisted with: EUS 347




Open to non-majors.  An examination of the role of comedy in German cinema.  Theory and analysis by example of films from the genre extending from the silent-film era to the present.  Specific German sub-genres, such as the cabaret film and Brechtian comedy will be treated along with the traditions of slapstick, musical, romantic comedy, and the newer humorous road film and feminist comedy.  The course will cover a one-reeler by the early Ernst Lubitsch,  the high point around 1930 (e.g. Wilhelm Thiele’s THE THREE FROM THE GAS STATION); LUCKY KIDS, a Third Reich comedy; some films made by exiles from the Nazi Third Reich such as Lubitsch’s TO BE OR NOT TO BE   (1942), as well as Billy Wilder’s A FOREIGN AFFAIR  (1948) and ONE, TWO, THREE  (1961), both filmed in Germany. Also included will be post-WW II films such THE CAPTAIN OF KOEPENICK  (1956), the GDR’s Carbide & Sorel (1963),  a New German Cinema production such as LINA BRAAKE  (1976 ); and films from the comedy waves of the 1980s to present, such as Doris Dörrie’s MEN  (1985), Michael Verhoeven’s NASTY GIRL (1990), Sönke Wortmann’s MAYBE...MAYBE NOT  (1996), and Wolfgang Becker’s GOOD BYE LENIN!  (2003).  The course will familiarize students with the historical and cultural background as context of the films.


This is a course with a Substantial Writing Component.



Hake, Sabine. German National Cinema. 2nd edition.  London/N.Y.: Routledge, 2008.

A selection of articles (class package).


Homework and Assignments:

Viewing of one film a week outside of class hours.  Preparation and discussion of the required films.  Four précis, two film reviews of approx. 300 words each, an outline, and 8-10 page paper.  Short paper to serve as a basis for class discussion. Students desiring extra credit: oral presentation of same paper. The course contains a substantial writing component and fulfills part of the basic education requirement in writing. 



Class Participation 20%

contribution to discussion, questions asked, comments made

Papers 50%

Four 1 page Précis: 3% each

Two 2 page Reviews: 5% each

One 10 page Paper 28%

Exams 30%

Quiz 5%

mid-semester, in-class dress rehearsal exam for the Final 5%

Final 20% )


NOTE: More than 5 absences and late paper to affect your grade (- 5% for each day).  Plus/minus grading.

No late oral presentations.  Save your allowable absences for emergencies.

GER 328 • Advanced German Grammar

37460 • Spring 2009
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm JES A303A

Course Description:
German 328 is designed to help you refine your command and understanding of German grammar.  The course focuses primarily on formal accuracy, but class activities will include communicative applications of grammatical points.  German 328 is not a course in composition, conversation, or stylistics, although there are elements of such courses in German 328.  (The department offers other courses dedicated to these topics.)  You must have completed second year German here at UT or have earned credit for second year German through a placement exam, AP exam, or transfer credit to enroll in German 328.


-Frank E. Donahue, Deutsche Wiederholungsgrammatik (required)
-A German-English dictionary of your choice

Tests (4 x 20%):     80%
Participation:         20%

Four tests will be given over the course of the semester.  Tests typically cover four or more chapters of the textbook and consist of items similar to those on the homework assignments and in-class exercises.  Each test is worth 20% of your semester grade. Because the tests are increasingly cumulative, there is no final exam in this class.


Participation includes attendance, asking questions, answering questions, and taking part in class discussions.  Attendance is crucial.  Unexcused absences will result in poor grades for participation!  Please notify the instructor as soon as possible if it is necessary for you to be absent from class.  In accordance with UT policy, you may be excused from class to participate in religious observances and official obligations like club or varsity sports.  In such cases, written documentation must be presented to the instructor at least one week before the absence takes place.

GER 331L • Adv Conversatn & Compos: Lit

37465 • Spring 2009
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm JES A303A


There are two central goals of this course. The first is to introduce you to several core issues in contemporary Germany to familiarize you with important elements of German culture and society and the ways in which these topics are discussed in Germany. This aspect of the course is meant to prepare you to engage in conversations with Germans on a variety of current and controversial topics. To this end we will read and/or listen to a wide range of material (film, music, poetry, news reports, and print media) that relate to post-wall German society, politics, and culture. These materials are organized according to four broad thematic units. The second goal of the course is to improve your written and spoken command of German. This means that you will expand your active vocabulary, aim for a consistently high level of grammatical accuracy with basic structures, continually add more advanced grammatical structures to your active repertoire, and increase the linguistic register at which you can produce German. You will be expected to use grammatical structures appropriately and thoughtfully and to add increasingly sophisticated and complex elements first to your written essays and then to your spoken German. We will practice these elements in interaction (dialogues, conversations, question-and-answer settings, and debates) before you use them in formal group and individual presentations. The course will be conducted in German.

Course Objectives
By the end of this semester you should be able to:
• compose short written essays in German with a high degree of grammatical accuracy, a varied vocabulary, and in a formal register;
• participate in verbal interactions in German with ease and advanced fluency using both colloquial phrasing in conversation as well as formal elements in debates and presentations;
• understand and comment on primary German sources about contemporary Germany; and demonstrate a solid understanding of core issues central to German society and culture.

All of the required material is available online or via Blackboard. It is expected that you print out each text and worksheet in advance of the respective class, make notes on it as you read it, and bring it to class. Each video should be watched multiple times and you should bring questions pertaining to the material read and/or viewed. There are supplementary documents in the file “TEXTE” and stylistic rubrics in the “Materialien” folder. Consult these folders each week.

Preparation and participation    15%
Weekly writing assignments    15%
Quizzes                10%
Three two-page papers        40%
Group presentation            20%
Plus/minus grades will be assigned for the final course grade.


Moeller, H. (1973, March) Das Kopenhagener. German Quarterly, XLVI(2), 234-240.

Moeller, H. (1966, September) Thomas Manns venezianische Gutterkunde, Plastik und ZeitlosigkeitDeutsche Vierteljahrsschrift fur Literaturwissonschaft u. Geistesgeschichte, 40, 184-205

Curriculum Vitae

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