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date: 02 July 2022

Abstract and Keywords

Starting with a critical introduction to the problematic beginnings and US-supported rise of American studies in pre– and post–WWII Germany, this chapter looks at the teaching of American realism and its development in a nation strongly influenced by US culture. Based on archival research, a statistical evaluation of annual bulletins, and information collected from fifty practitioners, the chapter offers the first quantitative and thematic analysis of course offerings at German universities (1953–2016), the first comparison of the relative importance of American realist literature in German university courses and research publications from German-speaking countries (2000–2015), and the first survey of German Americanists on methods and experiences of teaching US realism and naturalism in the Federal Republic (2017). The chapter concludes by calling for new didactic approaches to illustrate the continuing relevance of writers active in the core period of the realist tradition.

Keywords: American studies, German Americanists, realism in Germany, teaching realism, teaching naturalism, realist courses, survey of teaching

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