Daniela Dahn was the 2010 Max Kade Writer in Residence. Dahn was born in Berlin in 1949; both her parents were journalists. She was raised in Kleinmachnow in what was the German Democratic Republic. She studied journalism in Leipzig, and then began working as an editor for a GDR television program. Presently, Dahn serves on the Executive Board of PEN (Postsecondary Education Network) and lectures all around the world.

Spring 2010 Max Kade Writer in Residence, Lafayette College

Germ 441 Senior/Junior Seminar: GDR Literature and Society

Prof. Rado Pribic


The aim of this seminar is to analyze the 40 years (1949-1989) of German Democratic Republic’s existence. Through literary texts, films, and discussions the students will be introduced to the origins of the two divided Germanies, their differences, and the events that led to the eventual unification of the FDR and the GDR on October 3, 1990.

The course will emphasize literary texts and familiarize the student with the major GDR writers such as B. Brecht, A. Seghers, Ch. Wolf, and J. Bobrowski. Since we are fortunate to have Daniela Dahn, a prominent East Berlin writer, as our “Max Kade Writer in Residence” on campus, we will read some of her texts and discuss them with her. The seminar will be conducted in German, which should help the student improve his/her oral and written proficiency. Papers and oral presentations will be critiqued, and revised versions of written work should improve the students’ German expression. All assignments should also contribute to a better understanding of the GDR.