Gary Baker

Gary Baker

Coordinator of German
Position Type
- Present

I have been teaching and advising students at Denison since the fall of 1989. Language has always fascinated me. As a young child growing up in central Pennsylvania, I heard snippets of Pennsylvania Dutch, a dialect of German. The German language has been a passion of mine since I first took it in high school. 

What I love about teaching the language and cultures of the German-speaking world are the myriad events and issues that such study presents. Whether politics, literature, culture, economics, social development or history, these cultures have presented the world with gravest problems and the most brilliant solutions. In other words, we find every possible experience known to humankind in the current societies and histories of Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. 

My research focuses on German writers whose themes have touched on Germany’s division, the student movement and terrorism, and the more recent Berlin Republic. But Denison does not cubbyhole its professors. Even though my expertise is in German, I also enjoy teaching International Studies where we talk about the emergence of the nation-state and commodity chains in order to understand how our world came to be the way it is today. In my “Making of the Modern World” course, students create what I call a “Poverty Impact Index” to raise awareness about consumption and the conditions in which our products are made. 

B.A., Juniata College; M.A., Pennsylvania State University; Ph.D., University of Minnesota


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