WiSe 14/15: Berlin Now. Cultural, Social and Political Developments in Berlin 2014
Zusätzl. Angaben / Voraussetzungen
Englischkenntnisse im Bereich ab B1 (GER)
After having been the capital of Imperial, Weimar, Nazi and Socialist Germany as well as a, or even the, symbol of the Cold War, Berlin is now one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe: ... Lesen Sie weiter
After having been the capital of Imperial, Weimar, Nazi and Socialist Germany as well as a, or even the, symbol of the Cold War, Berlin is now one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe: the number of overnight stays has almost tripled in a matter of 10 years. The city is also a magnet for students, international members of the "creative class", and, increasingly, extremely desirable for real estate investors.
On the other hand, with more than 11% unemployment, 16,8 % people receiving social welfare money, a shortage of affordable housing, some highly problematic building and infrastructure projects and a debt of more than 61 billion Euros, Berlin is faced with very serious political and economic problems. As a result, "touristification" and "gentrification" are two frequently used terms in the current debate about the present situation, which shows that certain developments are not universally appreciated by Berliners. In the seminar, we will analyse some of the reasons for and possible consequences of Berlin's enormous popularity, we will try to look at some of the most relevant social and polital challenges and examine how the city copes with them.
The course materials will be made available as a digital course reader; in addition to studying academic texts analysing urban tourism, city "branding" and gentrification, as well as journalistic texts about the present situation, students will venture out and do research in the streets of Berlin.
Assessment: Along with regularly attending the seminar and studying the course materials, students will be expected to participate in a small group research project and present the results in class. Additionally, students will sit a written examination in January (90 minutes).