Foto: Matthias Friel
Consumption is a necessary part of life. It is through consumption of matter recognized as food and metabolic processes that human bodies sustain themselves. However, if this is one of bare life's necessities, what is there to argue about? Is the question "to consume or not to consume?" with its radical self-negating implications available to us at all and, if so, how do we pose it to not write ourselves out of existence? Investigating the cultural significance of consumption means to consciously pose these questions differently in order to go beyond any absolutist stance while keeping it in mind all the time.
This course familiarizes participants with different theories from various fields of academic inquiry grappling with 'consumption' and discusses how these may be productively applied in literary / cultural studies research. Its aim is to guide students in developing and writing a short, theoretically grounded research paper that engages with a topic of their choice in relation to consumption. After submitting a draft of their paper, students will rework their papers for publication based on the instructor's feedback and re-submit them to receive their grade.
The publication process entails your paper being made available to the university-public. Be mindful that this is a theory-heavy course, which requires you to carefully read and prepare the assigned resources. The course design also requires students to conceptualize and start writing their papers early-on rather than toward the end of the semester.
Together, we will ask questions about, among other things,
all participants: regular attendance and participation in in-class discussions
3 ECTS ungraded: introduction of a course reading in class and discussion thereof ('presentation')
3 ECTS graded: research paper (approximately 1500 words) including research design, two rounds of feedback and publication
6 ECTS graded: research paper (approximately 1500 words) including research design, two rounds of feedback and publication plus introduction of a course reading in class and discussion thereof ('presentation')
Over the course of this seminar, all participants obtaining a grade will develop research designs for their final papers, upload them to Moodle and feedback each other's projects. They will incorporate this feedback before writing a draft of their paper. After submitting the draft version of their paper, students will rework their papers based on the instructor's feedback and re-submit them for publication to receive their grade.
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