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Professor of German Language Emeritus, Dartmouth College

Bruce Duncan, the Dartmouth Professor of German Language emeritus, retired in June, 2015, after 46 years of teaching at the college.

He studied at Williams College and Cornell (Ph.D. 1969), as well as at the University of Munich and the Free University of Berlin. He received fellowships from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the NDEA, DAAD, and ACLS, and in the fall of 1973 he taught as a guest professor at the University of Cincinnati.

Chair of German Studies at various times, including from 1980-89, he also served as Associate Dean for the Humanities from 1989-93 and for 18 months as Acting Director of the Hopkins Center for the Performing Arts. At the time of his retirement, the Dean of Faculty Office awarded him the Robert A. Fish 1918 Memorial Prize for his contributions to undergraduate teaching.

His literary research centers on German literature of the 18th and 19th centuries and includes articles on Achim von Arnim, Gellert, Gerstenberg, Goethe, Gottsched, Hoffmann, "Goethe's Werther and the Critics" was published in 2005 as part of the Camden House series Literary Criticism in Perspective.

His translations include Achim von Arnim's Novellas of 1812 (published in 1997) and Luise Gottsched's Der Witzling (1990).

Since 1970 he has been developing and writing about programs for computer-assisted teaching and learning, and in 1972 he composed an experimental textbook for German language instruction that utilized his computer drills. These efforts were supported by the Culpeper, Sears, and Sloan Foundations, as well the NSF, the Consortium for Language Teaching and Learning, and the Dartmouth Venture Fund. In his retirement, he continues to develop and add to his online applications: A German Grammar Review, annotext, and DartDrill.


  • –present
    Professor of German Language Emeritus, Dartmouth College