08 January 2008


I'm famous in Leipzig. Yesterday I and two fellow students were featured in the local paper, the Leipziger Volkszeitung. I was a little disappointed that it sounds like I'm so negative (especially since it ends on a funny but serious note), but hey, cool. Poor Lisa. They should have added her just for good measure.

The translation follows:

Far Away From Home to Discover Your Own Country: How two Americans are studying American Studies in Leipzig

To go to a strange country to get to know your own country better? May sound funny, but that's exactly what Heather Carmody (23) and Michelle Glauser (22) have done. Since October both Americans have been studying at the University of Leipzig in the new Master's American Studies program. "The critical distance of the professors here allows me to look at my own culture from another view," finds Heather.

That is exactly how it goes with the new program--around varied perspectives. The Master's degree is interdisciplinary and combines politics, culture, literature, and sociology. Anne Koenen, professor for American Literature and the leader of the institute, explains: "It was planned from the beginning, that the programm would be international. That's how a totally different discussion is accomplished." In this respect is the program different for the Americans than if it were discussed in their home culture, explains Koenen. Heather noticed already after a short time, that it is not always completely easy, but she learned to deal with it. "If I always wanted to stand up for the honor of the USA, I would constantly feel attached." And Michelle adds: "I often think: if some of my fellow students had lived in the USA, they wouldn't think what they do."

Anyhow, Leipzig is fast becoming a second home for both, also because they are not in Germany for the first time. Last year, Heather worked as a teacher in Mittweida. She randomly found out about the new Master's program through a speech given by the Leipzig American Studies professor Crister Garrett. "I though, that was a big chance for me, although I actually wanted to do a Master's in German Studies." Michelle also sought a new challenge after working for two years. A program in another country seems to be like the right choice for her.

The group of Master's students is very small right now. Besides the two Americans are two Germans who make the quartet complete. Lars Weise is one of them and is excited by the combination: "It gives me another perspective, because every day I get to hear how Germany functions, for example the bureaucracy." Michelle finds the bureaucracy particularly horrible.

Julia Woehrle


  1. That's awesome! Your pic is especially cute. Miss you.

  2. Wow, Michelle! Great job! (btw--Your comment at the end made me laugh)I'm proud to know you!