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The critical reception of Herta Müller in the German and English printed media before and after the Nobel Prize for Literature 2009

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After being awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2009, Herta Müller attained great prominence around the world. Commentators, especially in English-speaking countries, seemed shocked by the decision. One of

After being awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2009, Herta Müller attained great prominence around the world. Commentators, especially in English-speaking countries, seemed shocked by the decision. One of the primary concerns was that Müller was relatively unknown. This thesis seeks to address this and other concerns by looking at reviews of her works in German- and English-language publications both before and after the Nobel Prize was awarded. This thesis analyses chronologically the reception of her books beginning with Niederungen in 1982 and ending with the reception of her novel Atemschaukel in 2009. It compares the reception of the original German text to that of the English translation; therefore only works which have been translated and published in English are discussed. The study also shows that while Müller's work did not top the bestseller charts, at least before the Nobel Prize, she was hardly the completely unknown author that some in the English-language media believed. This thesis seeks to present trends in the reception as well as provide a basis for further study of the reception of Herta Müller.

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  • 2011

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An analysis of two World War II propaganda films [electronic resource]: the German Feuertaufe and the Polish-British This is Poland

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At the beginning of the 20th century, the introduction of the motion picture as a medium changed the way people disseminate information between each other and to the masses. The

At the beginning of the 20th century, the introduction of the motion picture as a medium changed the way people disseminate information between each other and to the masses. The magnitude of this change was supplemented and amplified first by, the addition of sound, then color, and finally (possibly most importantly) the invention of the technology to send and receive motion picture signals along with their corresponding sound tracks. This would eventually all be combined in the production of the first television sets. Some of the most stunning illustrations of the power brought about by this medium can be observed in the way that Germany was able to utilize film during (and before) World War II. The idea of using cinema as a propaganda tool led to the creation of UFA during WWI (1914-1918). Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels' fascination with film and its propaganda potential led to the development of many successful public communication techniques and numerous tactics used to influence the people's thoughts and actions. This thesis provides background information pertaining to the outbreak of World War II including the German propaganda machine, and examines the role that motion pictures played in the distribution of anti-Polish messages before and during the early stages of the war. It focuses specifically on the film Feuertaufe as an example illustrating six major tenants of Nazi film propaganda namely: oversimplification, appeal to emotions, harnessing the power of the visual image, intentional blurring of lines between entertainment and facts, repetition, and the use of graphics combined with music. Next, this essay explores how each of the abovementioned characteristics were used by the Poles and the British in their pro-Polish film This is Poland in order to sway public opinion and spread messages aligned with their political views respectively. This thesis concludes by stressing the importance of being aware of these techniques so that one may be able to separate fact from hype, and by looking at the possible utilization of the six tenants in the years to come as smart mobile-devices usher in yet another metamorphosis of the art of information distribution.

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  • 2014