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Lafayette will dedicate its new technologically advanced headquarters for the study of German today in room 429 of Pardee Hall.

The dedication of the Max Kade Center for German Studies at Lafayette will open with a reception at 3:30 p.m., followed by opening remarks at 4:15 p.m. by Lafayette president Arthur J. Rothkopf ’55, Roxanne Lalande, professor and head of foreign languages and literatures, and Ed McDonald, professor of foreign languages and literatures. Diane Shaw, college archivist, will speak on the theme of the center’s inaugural exhibition, “On the History of Teaching German at Lafayette College.” Frank Trommler, professor of Germanic languages and literatures at University of Pennsylvania, will give a keynote address at 5 p.m. on “German Studies in the United States: Reflections on Writing Their History.”

The Max Kade Center for German Studies has been established through a $65,000 grant from the Max Kade Foundation. Pardee Hall room 429 has been transformed into a “smart” classroom with the latest in projection and control system technology, as well as moveable walls, “smart” lighting, wood paneling, high-end window treatments, and other upgrades. The easily adjusted configuration will allow the room to serve as a classroom, reading room, conference room, informal discussion area, multi-media presentation facility, and library.

Max Kade Foundation director Hans Hachmann met with students and faculty last spring. He later awarded an additional $5,000 grant that will help fund a German library and the first in a series of visiting scholars and writers-in-residence that the department of foreign languages and literatures plans to host. Herbert Herzmann, professor and head of German at University College Dublin in Ireland, will serve a residency March 10-12, interacting with students majoring in German and delivering a public lecture. Herzmann has authored Tradition und Subversion: Das Volksst├╝ck und das epische Theater, edited several books, and published many journal and newspaper articles and book chapters. He has presented papers and/or delivered talks in the United States, Germany, Ireland, Portual, Chile, and Ecuador.

The study of German has a rich tradition at Lafayette. On Christmas Eve in 1824, a advertisement appeared in the Easton Centinel, calling on the citizens of Easton to attend a meeting to initiate establishment of a college “in which, besides military science and tactics, the various branches of education, including the German language, shall be taught” Neither military science nor German was taught at any colleges at that time.

Lafayette’s German instructors – McDonald, Margarete Lamb-Faffelberger, associate professor and assistant head of foreign languages and literatures, and Rado Pribic, Oliver Edwin Williams Professor of Languages and chair of the International Affairs and Russian and Eastern European Studies programs – teach an average of 50 students each semester. Fifteen to 20 percent of Lafayette students enrolled in German also major in it, and many more declare German as their minor.

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