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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Enhancing digital teaching

Berlin as a multiple stage

Berlin as a multiple stage


Taught by Silvia Mazzini

Wednesday, 10:00 - 12:00, Hausvogteiplatz 5-7, Room 008

Course taught in English (with parts in German, depending on language level)

Course Description

‘All the world's a stage’ – and Berlin is that in a special way. As a matter of fact, different and multicultural social spaces coexist in the capital of Germany. As many districts of Berlin present themselves more or less spontaneously in a certain form to a ‘public’ of visitors or tourists, they can be considered and examined as independent stages.
This seminar is aimed at students of the humanities (in first instance theater, media and cultural studies and sociology, but also literature and urban studies) and is a short journey through the panorama of different staging areas in Berlin. A selection of theater, cultural, philosophical and sociological theories on the concept of ‘staging’ (E. Fichte-Lichte, A. Boal, G. Gadamer, E. Goffman) will be first analyzed and discussed, in order to acquire different analytical tools. With the help of these background tools, it will be possible to recognize and describe not only latent and manifest aspects of staging in the city, but also their causes and socio-cultural implications. So after the preliminary theoretical work, it will be possible to analyze different theater institutions (i.a. Berliner Ensemble, the open air Monbijou-Theater) and to participate at important international festivals in Berlin (“Theatertreffen”, May 2014; “Foreign Affairs”, June 2014)
Every student will be expected to hold a short presentation and write a field research report in German or in English.


  • Abel, Lionel: Tragedy and Metatheatre. New York 2003
  • Boal, Augusto: Theatre of the Oppressed. New York 1979
  • Goffman, Ervin: The presentation of Self in Everyday Life. New York 1959
  • Fischer-Lichte, Erika: Berliner Theater im 20. Jahrhundert, Berlin 1998
  • Ders.: Inszenierung von Authentizität. Tübingen 2000
  • Gadamer, Hans-Georg: Wahrheit und Methode, Tübingen 1960
  • Shakespeare, William: Hamlet. Zweisprachige Ausgabe, Deutsch von Frank Günther. München 1995