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Events and Activities

Newsletter of the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures

December 2010

Upcoming Events

A campus memorial service will be held for Professor Frederick Schwink on Thursday, February 3, 2011 from 7:30-9:00 p.m. in Lucy Ellis Lounge, Foreign Languages Building. For further information contact Professor Harriet Murav ( Memorial contributions can be made to: Schwink Kids Educational Fund, c/o Bank of Marin, 999 Andersen Drive, San Rafael, CA 94901.

Professor Glenn Ehrstine (University of Iowa) will discuss "Pandering to the Masses or Expanding Horizons? Packaging the German Curriculum for Non-Majors" on Thursday, December 2, 2010 from 10:00- 11:30 a.m. in Foreign Languages Building Room 2090B. All are welcome, especially graduate students needing to design their own courses when they accept a new position. Faculty should also be able to contribute based on their experiences. Prof. Ehrstine's experience is based in part on the merging of the German Department at the University of Iowa with other foreign language units in a new division of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures.

Professor Glenn Ehrstine (University of Iowa) will speak on "Late Medieval Play Spectatorship between Private and Public Devotion" at 5:15 P.M. on Thursday, December 2, 2010 in the Lucy Ellis Lounge, Foreign Languages Building. A reception will follow.

The University of Illinois German Choir will perform its Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 5 at 3:00 PM in the Chapel of Saint John the Divine, 1101 South Wright Street, Champaign. Choral and instrumental works from the Renaissance and Baroque by Schütz, Charpentier, and Buxtehude will be performed. Admission is free.

The annual Julfest, a program of Scandinavian holiday music, poetry, and a traditional Lucia procession,  will take place on Sunday, December 5 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. on the top floor of the McKinley Foundation, 809 S. Fifth Street in Champaign. This year, the performance and program will be the first event of the evening, beginning around 5 p.m. Afterwards, there will be a potluck smorgasbord; please bring a dinner item to share. The Julfest is hosted by the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures with support from the Swedish Language Students and the Scandinavian Club. Questions, please contact

Mark Safstrom,, or Anna Stenport at

Mary DeGuire will defend her doctoral dissertation on Wednesday, December 15 at 10 a.m. in the Foreign Languages Building. The room location will be announced soon on the main “News and Activities” page of the department website ( DeGuire’s dissertation is entitled “Intertextuality in Goethe’s Werther,” and was written under the direction of Professor Carl Niekerk. The defense is open to the public.


Mark Safstrom defended his dissertation successfully in November and received the Ph.D. from the Scandinavian Studies Department at the University of Washington. His thesis is entitled “The Religious Origins of Democratic Pluralism: Paul Peter Waldenström and the Politics of the Swedish Awakening 1868-1917.” Congratulations, Dr. Safstrom!


Professor Andrea Golato published: “Studying compliment responses: A comparison of DCTs and recordings of naturally occuring talk.” In S. Ross, P. Seedhouse & K. Richards (Eds.), Research Methods in Second Language Acquisition: An Advanced Resource Book. Routledge. 2011. (Partial Reprint of Golato, A. (2003). Studying compliment responses: A comparison of DCTs and recordings of naturally occurring talk. Applied Linguistics, 24(1), 90-121.)

Professor Stephanie Hilger published: “The Murderess on Stage: Christine 
Westphalen’s Charlotte Corday (1804),” in Women and Death 3: Women’s 
Representations of Death in German Culture since 1500. Eds. Anna Richards 
and Clare Bielby. Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2010.  71-87.

Professor Mara Wade published:


Professor Cori Crane presented:

Renata Fuchs presented: “Rahel Levin Varnhagen’s Letters From Exile” at the conference “German Women’s Writing in Its European Context, 1700-1900” at the Institute of Germanic and Romance Studies, University of London, November 2010.

Professor Andrea Golato presented:

Regine Kroh presented: “Fiktionale Räume – Literatur als Zwischenraum” at the conference “Ethnographische Raumpraktiken” in Berlin in November 2010. She also gave a talk for a local library association in Greifswald, in cooperation with the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung, entitled “Wendeliteratur und ihre Rezeption in den USA, oder: Warum ich in Amerika promoviere.”

Professor Carl Niekerk was interviewed by Carmel Howard from the National Australian Broadcasting Corporation (Australian Public Radio), on the program “Encounter,” on the topic of Mahler’s Second Symphony. The program will air December 5.

Another interview with Carl Niekerk appeared in Inside Illinois (November 18, 2010 edition;

Professor Anke Pinkert participated in the panel “What I Learned From Teaching in a Prison” on November 29 at the Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities.

Professor Mara Wade presented:

Professors Yasemin Yildiz and Michael Rothberg gave an invited joint lecture entitled "Memory Citizenship: Migrant Women and Holocaust Remembrance in Contemporary Germany" at Bryn Mawr College on November 22.

In conjunction with the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Austrian-American Educational Commission, known as the Austrian Fulbright Commission, several members of the Department and other colleagues from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign were invited to present a panel on the Austria-Illinois Exchange Program  at the Fulbright Conference "Impacts: Does Academic Exchange Matter?—Cultural Diplomacy, Scholarly Internationalism, and American Studies since Word War II" in Vienna, 18-19 November 2010:

Matthew Rosenstein, Associate Director, International Programs and Studies, the European Union Center, was also in attendance at the conference. Several Austrian and Illinois students from the AIEP were also present. Owing to the good graces of Resident Director, Professor Bruce Murray, the group had ample opportunity to meet with current and prospective AIEP students. Participation in this conference was generously supported by the the Austrian Fulbright Commission, Universität Wien, Teaching Advancement Board, European Union Center, Study Abroad Office, and the Graduate College.  Photos from the conference are available via the Austrian Fulbright home page by clicking the link to their Face Book page on the lower right.  The Department's Austrian Fulbright FLTA in 2009-2010, Dr. Irene Zavarsky, is now the AAEC U.S. Program Officer at Fulbright, Vienna, and sends her regards to the department. Please see the newsletter of the Austrian Fulbright Commission hanging on the bulletin board in 2090.

Regular Events

The German conversation group meets weekly on Tuesdays from 2:30-3:30 p.m. in the Array Café (lower level of the Institute for Genomic Biology, east of the Morrow Plots near the FLB). For additional information, please contact Kerstin Istvanits (

The Swedish conversation group meets weekly on Wednesdays from 3:00-4:30 p.m. in Espresso Royale on Goodwin in Urbana. Look for the table with the Swedish flag.

Editorial Notes

The newsletter will be posted during semesters at the beginning of each month to the departmental website at (under “Newsletter” in the section “News and Activities”). Please send print-ready items to, with the subject heading “Newsletter,” by the end of each month for inclusion in the next month’s edition. The next newsletter will appear in early February 2011.

The Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures has an easy-to-navigate, frequently updated website at Much more information about our programs, our faculty, and our students is available there.