We stand for equality, diversity, and inclusivity, and we stand up for those harmed and made vulnerable by systemic racism, sexism and other forms of structural violence throughout the world, including here on this campus. And we stand with and in some cases as people of color, Muslims, Jews, immigrants, asylum-seekers, refugees, members of the LGBTQI communities and with women and girls across the spectrum– and all those in favor of equality and social justice.

As scholars and teachers, we are dedicated to exploring the scope of human diversity, the processes that shape contemporary human societies, and to reflect self-critically on taken-for-granted assumptions. We expose the foundations of structural inequality and we document and analyze the dangers posed by inflammatory rhetoric in mobilizing violence. We are committed to bringing all our resources to better understand and analyze the current moment, as well as protecting our vulnerable colleagues and students, and promoting a diverse, inclusive and just community.

The German Program is a lively academic community with a great deal of interaction among faculty and students. Classes are small, approximately 15 students per class at the beginning and intermediate level, and 5-10 students at the upper-level literature and culture courses. Outside of class a variety of activities enhance the German program including guest lectures, film showings, the weekly German Table and our Kaffeeklatsch. Our language assistant, typically a native speaker from Germany, meets with students for informal conversation and is available for tutoring. S/he is also involved in the activities of the German Club and helps with organizing events such as the weekly language tables and a Spieleabend (evening of German board games).

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A Humanities Lab: The German Fairy Tale in Popular Culture

Students of German enjoy the program’s location on the 4th floor of Lovejoy. Open doors of faculty offices, a beautiful seminar room, and a state-of the-art Language Resource Center provide an enticing setting for studying German and socializing with fellow students and the faculty. There is also a designated room just for our German and Russian Majors and Minors!

The German program offers language instruction from the beginning to the advanced level as well as a range of German Studies courses with a dual focus on literature and culture. Recent courses have included “Mission Impossible: Multicultural German Literature and Film,” “Environmental Humanities: Nature Philosophy’s Roots,” “Weird Fictions,” “Kleist and Kafka,” and “Sex, Madness, and Transgression in German Literature”. In light of Germany’s increasingly important economic and political role in Europe and the world, we encourage students to choose German to fulfill Colby’s three-semester language requirement. Regularly, students also complete the WiDaF (Wirtschaftsdeutsch als Fremdsprache) exam from the Franco-German Chamber of Commerce which is administered in Colby’s own WiDaF-Testzentrum. Incoming students who have had one or more years of high school German must take a placement test administered during the orientation period before the beginning of the fall semester. Entering students who obtained a 4 or 5 on the German AP Exam or scored 600 or higher on the German SAT II are exempt from the language requirement and may enroll in upper-level German courses.