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ROMN 420 A: Romanian Literature, Art, and Film: One Century of Cultural Transformations

Meeting Time: 
TTh 2:30pm - 4:20pm
* *
Joint Sections: 
C LIT 371 A, CHID 498 C
Otilia Baraboi
Otilia Baraboi

Syllabus Description:


Peles Castle in Romania

ROMANIA TRANSFORMED (Romanian Literature, Art and Film) 

Situated at the border between the East and West, Romania embodies the co-existence of cultural paradoxes informing major artistic trends and ideologies during the last 100 years. The course investigates the roots of surrealism, dadaism, theatre of the absurd, as well as practices of resistance against totalitarian regimes, and women's roles in forging a new democratic society.  The students will learn about New Romanian Cinema and will have the unique possibility to attend the 7th edition of the Romanian Film Festival online (November 13-22) and virtually meet with Romanian film directors and actors.  Taught in English, no knowledge of Romanian is required.


Poems: Ana Blandiana, Paul Celan; 

Plays: Eugene Ionesco's Chairs (1952), Matei Visniec's The Body of a Woman as a Battlefield in the Bosnian War (2000)

Short Stories: Gherasim Luca's The Passive Vampire (1945), Mircea Cărtărescu's The Architect (1989)

Essays: Emil Cioran's Letter to a Faraway Friend (1960) and Aphorisms from the Trouble of Being Born and Tears and Saints

Novellas: Herta Müller's The Passport (1989)


Tales from the Golden Age, dir. Ioana Uricariu, Hanno Hoffer, 2009

Christmas Gift, dir. Bogdan Muresanu, 2017

Uppercase Print, dir. Radu Jude, 2019

Otto the Barbarian, dir Ruxandra Ghițescu, 2020

General Education Requirements met:

Individuals and Societies (I&S)

Visual, Literary and Performing Arts (VLPA)


20 % oral presentation;

30% short paper;

50 % final paper about 9-10 double spaced pages.

Catalog Description: 
Explores Eastern and Western artistic trends and ideologies in Romanian literature and culture during the last 100 years. Investigates contributions to surrealism, dadaism, theatre of the absurd, and practices of resistance against communism as well as women's roles in forging a post-Soviet identity. Taught in English.
GE Requirements: 
Individuals and Societies (I&S)
Visual, Literary, and Performing Arts (VLPA)
Last updated: 
June 28, 2020 - 9:16pm