Free
Afternoon
seminars

Every Tuesday, 3 PM

Free seminars on German film, art, history ...

Once a week  (on Tuesday afternoon) GLS teachers conduct a free seminar on German culture & history - a great addition to your German course. The seminars cover these topics:

  1. Berlin
    Berlin's past and present
  2. German Culture
    Art, film & literature
  3. German History
    German Empire,  Nazi Reich, East & West Germany

1. Berlin

Berlin: Club history

Berlin's clubs and partys are legendary. What makes nightlife in Berlin so unique? Why is it different than elsewhere? What role does the city's history play?

Teacher: Heidi

Berlin: 13th to 20th Century

Berlin was founded in 1237. Just a sleepy provincial town for many centuries, the city was finally made capital of the Prussian Empire. How did this history shape Berlin? And the mentality of Berliners?

Teacher: Christina

Berlin: The Wall

The wall divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989, isolating the western and capitalist part of the city from its socialist surroundings. How come this wall was built? Why did it fall? And how did it influence the lives of Berliners?

Teacher: Sebastian

2. German Culture

German Literature

Text samples and film clips illustrate the development of German literature since Goethe.  How does literature shape or reflect society? 

Teacher: Petra

Art in Germany

This seminar analyses and discusses prominent works by German artists, among them master painters like Albrecht Dürer or Gerhard Richter

Teacher: Petra

German Cinema

We look at German film history - from silent movie classics of the 1920s to recent Oscar winners - and we discuss:  How did the Nazis (ab)use film?  What distinguishes East and West German films? What are the most interesting films right now?

Teacher: Gudrun

Art in Nazi Germany (1933 - 1945)

When the Nazis came to power, dissident artists - many of them Jewish - were driven into exile or murdered, their works were destroyed.  At the same time, the entire culture industry (in particular the film industry) was instrumentalised as a propaganda tool.

Teacher: Sebastian

German Language: Luther

This seminar is about the monk Martin Luther (1483 - 1546). You'll probably know that he invented Protestanism. But did you know that he had a huge impact on the German we speak today? It goes back to his translation of the bible. 

 Teacher: Cornelia

3. German history

German Empire: 1871 - 1918

The German Empire ("Kaiserreich") was founded in 1871, uniting 26 countries like Bavaria and Saxony in a German nation-state. The Empire ended with the abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II after World War I. 

Teacher: Jeremias

Weimar Republic (1918 - 1933)

The Weimar Republic is the first German democracy. It began in 1918 and ended, when the Nazis came to power. In Berlin the 1920ies were an age of excess: wild, glamorous and morbid (more). 

Teacher: Gudrun

National Socialism (1933 - 1945)

National Socialism equals war, terror and the holocaust. How could the National Socialists establish their dictatorship? What role did art and education play? What does the Nazi past mean for Germans today?

Teacher: Gudrun

FRG & Westberlin (1949 - 1989)

FRG = the former West Germany. Founded after World War II and Nazi terror, the BRD blossomed into an increasingly liberal democracy.  How did that happen - after such a desastrous past? What made this progress possible?

Teacher: Christina

GDR (1949 - 1990)

The GDR, commonly called East Germany, existed from 1949 till 1990, when East (socialist) and West (capitalist) were re-united.  How was life in socialist Germany? 

Teacher: Ellen

Biography: Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel has been Chancellor of Germany since 2005. And she lives near GLS, close to Museum Island. What made her the most powerful woman in the world?

Teacher: Nina