Graduate Center, Spring 2016

Soc. 84509– Sociology of Hasidism
Wednesdays, 11:45 – 1:45pm, 3 credits, Room TBA
Prof. Samuel Heilman

This course will explore the current Hasidic world looking at it sociologically. We will detail its history, structure, personalities, and conflicts. We put it in the context of fundamentalism. Special attention to issues of succession and continuity.

THEA 81300- Weimar on the Hudson: Music Theatre between the World Wars
Date/Time: TBA
Prof. David Savran

The 1930s bore witness to an unprecedented migration of artists, writers, and philosophers from Germany and Austria to elsewhere in Europe and the United States. This course studies the transatlantic traffic in music theatre—broadly construed—between the German-speaking world and the U.S. from the 1920s to the 1940s. Engaging with theories of exile, migration, and transnational cultural production, it will focus on artists and social theorists exiled to the U.S., many of them already influenced in the 1920s by U.S. culture, especially jazz and Hollywood cinema. These include Kurt Weill, Bertolt Brecht, Hanns Eisler, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Alexander Zemlinsky, Emmerich Kálmán, Ralph Benatzky, Arnold Schoenberg, Theodor W. Adorno, as well as anti-fascists such as Ödön von Horvath and Walter Benjamin who were not fortunate enough to make it the U.S. The course will also analyze operetta and musical theatre made in the U.S.A. by artists already conversant with European vernaculars, including Jerome Kern, Sigmund Romberg, Marc Blitzstein, and Cole Porter. Because works of these artists continue to be performed on both sides of the Atlantic, we will also study recent performances on both continents—as well as the many tragic echoes of exile from Nazi Germany in the current refugee crisis in Europe. Final grades will be determined by participation in seminar, two written reports, and a final paper.