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Fall 2017 Courses

Wittgenstein and Literary Theory

Tuesdays 10:05 – 12:35 p.m.
Toril Moi
LIT681S-01; PHIL681S-01; ENG582S-01
This course will examine key questions in literary theory from the point of view of ordinary language philosophy (Ludwig Wittgenstein, J. L. Austin, Stanley Cavell). The course will provide a grounding in the philosophy of Wittgenstein, Austin and Cavell. The emphasis will be on Wittgenstein. We will contrast Wittgenstein’s vision of language and Wittgenstein’s critique of philosophy with the tradition that builds on Saussure’s linguistics. We will also consider political critiques of ordinary language philosophy before turning to recent debates about the hermeneutics of suspicion, and modes of reading in literary studies today.
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German 880: Stimmung and Film Aesthethics 

Inga Pollmann

In this course, we will trace the history of Stimmung (mood, atmosphere, attunement, tonality) as an aesthetic term from the Enlightenment to Romanticism to Realism to Modernity (Kant, Fichte, Nietzsche, Simmel, Hoffmansthal, Heidegger) and discuss its relevance for and application to literature and art along the way (Stifter, Riegl). Our main question, however, will be the role of Stimmung for moving image aesthetics. Narrative and non-narrative films not only creates their own spatiotemporal worlds, but, as a medium that works by means of sensorial impact and immersion, film also imbricates the spectator in unique ways. We will explore the recourse to Stimmungsästhetik in early film theory (Hoffmannsthal, Lukács, Balázs, Eisner) and in particular its application to expressionist and Kammerspiel films of the 1920s. In a second step, we will look at contemporary global art cinema production (Malick, Arnold, Schanelec, Petzold) and discussions of Stimmung and related terms. Questions we will ask include: What is the relationship between Stimmung and narrative? How do elements of mise-en-scène (such as performance, décor, or framing), editing, and camerawork (camera movement, position, angle, lenses, focus) contribute to a Stimmung? What is the relationship between Stimmung, realism, and anthropocentrism? What is our conception of the spectator when we think about Stimmung? And finally, how does Stimmung help us think critically about past and current stylistic transformations? Readings/films in English and German (with translations); class discussion in English. M 4:40 PM – 7:10 PM. CAROLINA CAMPUS.

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