The German Novelle - GRMN5730

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2024 to 2025.


Students will learn to analyse literary texts and respond critically to a challenging body of work, with a particular emphasis on commentaries and close reading. Both their linguistic and their analytical skills will be developed through sustained exposure to a representative cross-section of one of the key genres in German literature, the Novella. The module will trace the emergence of the short prose narrative around 1800 and examine its adaptation during the nineteenth century, when realism asserted itself and became the subject of critical controversy. It will look at the major writers of the period to see what scope the development of realism offered them for artistic variation and psychological depth. Their works will be studied as reflections of the societies and regions to which they belonged and as indications of the profound political and economic changes occurring during the period.


Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 20
Total Private Study Hours: 130
Total Study Hours: 150

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods:

Essay 1 (2,000 words) – 50%
Essay 2 (2,000 words) – 50%

Reassessment methods:
100% Coursework (2,500 words)

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading
Kleist, H. (1984). Das Erdbeben in Chili. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Chamisso, A. (1980). Peter Schlemihls wundersame Geschichte. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Hoffmann, E.T.A. (1991). Der Sandmann. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Eichendorff, J. (1967). Das Marmorbild. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Büchner, G. (1987). Lenz. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Grillparzer, F. (1979). Der arme Spielmann. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Stifter, A. (1994). (stories from) Bunte Steine. Stuttgart: Reclam.
Storm, T (1963). Der Schimmelreiter. Stuttgart: Reclam.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of nineteenth-century German literature;
2. Demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of issues of genre;
3. Demonstrate the ability to critically analyse closely short stories;
4. Demonstrate the ability to read stories both thematically and stylistically, as well as how to place them in their relevant contexts;

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. Apply the skills needed for academic study and enquiry;
2. Evaluate information critically, interpreting a variety of evidence in a critical manner;
3. Synthesise information from a number of sources in order to gain a coherent understanding of the subject;
4. Study and reach conclusions independently;
5. Formulate original opinions in a self-critical manner on the basis of sound factual knowledge and from a balanced perspective.


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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