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Das Deutsche Problem: Human Rights and Cultural Conflict in Bavaria

Munich, Germany

Term Offered: 
Jewish Museum in Munich
Approximate Dates of Instruction: 
June 24, 2012 to July 21, 2012
Application Deadline: 
February 15, 2012

This program will explore historical evolution and conflict within social, political, racial, religious, and cultural constructs – focused on events occurring within and emanating from the Bavarian region of Germany. Famous for its picturesque mountains and castles, for centuries Bavaria has also been a crucible for wrenching social change, and has fostered radical domestic policy and world-views ranging from "Mad" King Ludwig to the Third Reich. Students will learn and debate the philosophy and practice of social engineering within the German historical context – while touring the actual sites where the policies originated and were put into practice.

Topics for study will include:

  • Kingdom, nation, state: Bavaria's socio-political evolution through the 19th Century
  • Anti-Semitism in German history: roots, practices, and remedies
  • The development and use of the "National Myth" as a tool of socio-political policy
  • The role of landscape, monuments, and tourist sites in developing a "National Myth"
  • Legal constructs for racial and social discrimination
  • The Death of Multiculturalism in Germany – 20th Century Edition
  • External political reformation and the imposition of "international norms"
  • Post-War social reconstruction and the birth of multiculturalism
  • Guest workers, immigrants, and terrorists – post-war German cultural development and strife
  • The Death of Multiculturalism in Germany – 21st Century Edition

Historical sites students will tour include:

  • Medieval churches Frauenkirche, St. Sebaldus, St. Ludwig
  • Castles Neuschwanstein, Hohenschwangau, and Linderof – King Ludwig's visionary palaces of "Bavarian" grandeur
  • "The Eagles Nest" – Hitler's Alpine headquarters, including historical museum and underground bunker complex
  • Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial
  • The Nuremberg Human Rights Center and Palace of Justice (site of the post-WWII Nuremberg war crimes trials)
  • German National Museum
  • Jewish Museum
  • Munich's 1972 Olympic Park and Memorials
  • CHID 471: National Myth and Social Reality -- Constructs for Social Engineering in Germany (5 credits)
  • CHID 498: Special Colloquia (1 credit)

Note: We recommend that you check with your academic advisor to see how these courses can count toward your departmental requirements.

Total Program Fees: 

*Please note that this does not include UW Study Abroad (IPE) Fee ($275), airfare (approximately $1600), food (about $30/day), Study Abroad Insurance ($37/month), other health expenses/immunizations, and personal spending money.

Make sure to read our Fees, Financing, and Withdrawal page for information on paying for your trip.