The Department of Germanic Studies is situated in the College of Arts and Sciences, the traditional center of the ancient academy and modern university.
The university in general, and the College in particular, is a place in which ideas and concepts are explored, examined, tested, contested, affirmed, and rejected by way of spirited but always civil and respectful argumentation. Students and scholars alike learn to reason in a variety of ways, using empirical, statistical, and conceptual evidence as well as logical and rhetorical modes of persuasion. It is in the Humanities especially where the back-and-forth of different modes of evidence-based verbal argumentation is paramount.
Above all, it is in the university classroom where exploratory and critical reasoning requires mutual respect for all participants, no matter our various differences. (Please see here and here for Indiana University policy on discrimination and harassment.)
The history of German-speaking Europe has taught us necessary and unforgettable lessons about what happens to society and peoples when these basic principles of human decency are violated. We know that mutual respect is fragile, especially in societies as diverse as ours. It is incumbent on all members of the IU community to cultivate a climate in which well-reasoned opinions can be uttered, heard, and debated
William Rasch (Chair), and the Faculty, Students, and Staff of Germanic Studies
Attention High School Students