Division of Philology and Literature

German Language and Literature

In the department’s research and educational activities, major emphasis is placed on modern and contemporary German literature, as might be expected given the research interests of the full-time faculty members. Nevertheless, we also offer a great variety of courses covering diverse aspects of the language and culture of the German-speaking world including not only Germany, but Austria and Switzerland as well, from the Middle Ages to the present. These courses are taught by faculty members from the Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, the Institute for Research in Humanities, or part-time lecturers from outside the university.

Currently, some 20 graduate and undergraduate students are enrolled in our programs. Many study sessions and reading circle meetings are held at the common studies room, sometimes also involving students from outside the department. In recent years, an increasing number of students have had a chance to study at institutions in German-speaking parts of the world under inter-university academic exchange agreements, and many students have earned their doctorate upon completing the doctoral program. In addition, graduate students play key roles in publishing the department’s annals, Kenkyū hōkoku.

Ever since its inauguration more than one hundred years ago, the department’s education and research pursuits have been characterized by a consistent emphasis on the close and exact reading of original texts — a tradition that has survived strongly into the present. At the same time, in recent years, we have endeavored to cultivate a broad vision covering a wide spectrum of Western culture, thought and society in general, reaching beyond the framework of German language and literature studies in their narrower sense.

For PDF version, click this icon. PDF File

MATSUMURA, Tomohiko Prof. Modern German literature
KAWASHIMA, Takashi Assoc. Prof. German literature from the 19th century to the present