Modern Languages

Photo of Dr. Robin Clouser
Photo of Dr. Robin Clouser

Robin Clouser

Robin Clouser loves talking to students about the history of ideas as seen in German literature.  He grew up in the Philadelphia area, has travelled extensively in Germany and Europe, and has taken Ursinus students to Tübingen and Florence for summer and semester programs.

Dr. Clouser’s classrooms are active and focused on student interests. In his “Germany Today” courses, students explore current political, economic, cultural and scientific news by accessing articles and research online and using their German-language skills. Through student presentations on music, art, geography and history, the sweep of German centuries of religious and secular ideas come alive. He enjoys helping students find study abroad opportunities and design independent study courses on their special interests. He encourages students to double-major for maximum educational breadth.

Dr. Clouser has conducted research at the Goethe Archives in Weimar as well as in Tübingen and Wuppertal.  He received research fellowships and grants from The National Endowment for the Humanities, The American Council of Learned Societies, and The American Philosophical Society, and published scholarly articles on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Heinrich von Kleist, Gerhard Hauptmann, and Gottfried Keller.  His book Love and Social Contracts analyzes men and women’s relationships in Goethe’s Unterhaltungen deutscher Ausgewanderten, a book of framed tales depicting German refugees after Napoleon’s invasion of Germany.


Modern Languages


  • B.A., Ursinus College
  • A.M., University of Pennsylvania
  • Ph.D., University of Kansas


German Literature, Culture and Art, 800 to the present
Deutschland Heute, Germany Today
Scientific and Medical German
German M?rchen, medieval and modern political fairy tales
German Cinema, Silent Films to the Present

Research Interests

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s Wilhelm Meister novels

Das deutsche M?rchen

19th-century authors Heinrich von Kleist, Gerhard Hauptmann, Gottfried Keller

Recent Work

2007 Publication of “‘Die pilgernde Törin’: Genesis, Revaluation, and Mirroring in Goethe’s Wanderjahre,” Goethe Yearbook: Publications of the Goethe Society of         North   America, 14 (2007), 171-206.

1999 “Goethe’s View of Moravianism in Bekenntnisse einer schönen Seele,” co-authored with Christian Rice, Unitas Fratrum. 45/46 (1999), 193-205. 

1991 Love and Social Contracts:  Goethe’s Unterhaltungen deutscher Ausgewanderten.  Germanic Series in America, general editor Katherina Mommsen, Stanford University.  Bern, Switzerland: Peter Lang, 1991.