This page is just intended as a placeholder while the site
is being developed.
you for your patience.
the Web to Teach Literature and History:
Heinrich Heine's Germany. A Winter's Tale (1844) as
a case study of political poetry.
pilot project, launched in conjunction with the new course,
"Dangerous Books" (HACU/SocSci 220; co-taught with
Professor Mary Russo), and with the support of a summer grant
from the National Endowment for the Humanities, via Hampshire
I often find it difficult to teach students about the European
past because they lack the background knowledge that would
enable them to see connections to their own interests. Ironically,
this is especially true of political texts that should be
the most appealing: The issuesfreedom of expression,
nationhood, identity, social justiceare universal, but
the points of reference are too deeply anchored in a distant
A good example is Heinrich Heine's classic political satire
of the repressive Restoration era. Having taught it several
times in two different classes, I find that students instinctively
like it. They appreciate it much more when they understand
the references, but the standard English edition contains
no explanatory material, and I am therefore forced to spend
a great deal of class time filling the gap. I have often wanted
to provide some more systematic assistance but had not until
now found the time or the means.
New technologies provide a convenient solution. My goal is
to create a comprehensive pilot web site devoted to this poem
and its world. The ability of the internet to integrate multiple
media (text, image, sound) and permit "readers"
to move about in non-linear fashion is ideally suited to the
task of interpreting such complex documents.
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