Reimagining the German Canon: German Classics in Contemporary Transcultural Theater

Event date to be determined

The 2010 play Verrücktes Blut (Crazy Blood), written and directed by Nurkan Erpulat and Jens Hillje, tells the story of a high school teacher who wants to instill in her students—most of them with Migrationshintergrund — Friedrich Schiller’s humanist values of freedom and self-determination by forcing them to act out scenes from The Robbers and Intrigue and Love at gunpoint. In my presentation, I analyze how Verrücktes Blut engages with pressing societal issues through a close intertextual engagement with classics of German drama, specifically the two Schiller plays mentioned above. I argue that Erpulat and Hillje’s play promotes a transcultural notion of German national identity by engaging critically with question of canonization as a literary reflection on larger discourses of belonging and exclusion.

STEFFEN KAUP is a Ph.D. Candidate in The Carolina-Duke Graduate Program in German Studies, where he is currently finishing up a dissertation on satire in contemporary Turkish German fiction, an intersectional study that investigates the transcultural politics of contemporary satirical works. His broader research interests include gender and sexuality studies, kinship and memory studies, as well as foreign language pedagogy, instructional technology, and digital humanities. Besides teaching at Duke and UNC, Steffen has also been on the faculty of St. Olaf College and the Middlebury Summer Language Schools.

This event is part of the NCGS Seminar Series. Refreshments will be served after each seminar.

Event Location: 
Room 569, Hamilton Hall, UNC Campus