Home Introduction Table of contents Aims of the project Timetable Analysis of Red Mars Projects Links

Phase 0: Preparation

Phase1: Introduction

Phase 2: Red Mars - The text

Phase 3: The project proper



TIME: April - 25 October 99

1 Reading Red Mars

2 Grids: concerning plot/content and characterization of Maya; Frank; John

3 Basic knowledge (analysis of narrative prose; Mars: data and history of exploration; vocabulary)

4 Preparation of papers/presentations for the first plenary session



TIME: 1.5 weeks (25 October - 3 November 99)

1 Basic knowledge test

2 Science fiction - What and why? (course level)

3 First plenary session (all three courses; afternoon and early evening)



- general survey of the project: aims, methods, schedule

- papers and presentations on:

a. exploration and geography of Mars

b. novels about Mars

c. Robinson, Green Mars / Blue Mars (plot and basic aspects of content)

d. plans and visions about the colonization of Mars

- presentation of GHO(Gymnasium Haus Overbach) Mars library

- BBC-video: Future Fantastic: Colonizing the Red Planet



TIME: ca. 5 weeks (4 November - ca. 8 December 99)

course level:

1 Reconstruction of plot and basic aspects of content: Red Mars (Green Mars; Blue Mars)

2 Analysis of narrative techniques: Point(s) of view/narrative perspective(s)

3 Analysis of characters/character constellations:

-triangular relationship: Maya, John and Frank

-"minor" characters: Arkady, Nadia, Anne, Sax, Hiroko, Coyote, Michel etc.

4 Content: themes and leitmotifs; core passages

- terraforming: Reds vs Greens

- society: Martian autonomy vs external influences( the role of the UNOMA and the transnationals; the treaty; the space elevator etc.)

- the First100 as media stars of the 21st century

- longevity: the gerontology treatment

- escapism on Mars: the Hiroko theme/the hidden colony

- mythology: Martian creation myths

- areology/areography: geological and geographical aspects of Mars

- astronomy and meteorology

- technology: early beginnings at Underhill; vehicles; habitats; transponder roads; Windmill heaters; moholes; the space elevator; dirigibles; rocketry; propulsion systems

5 KLAUSUR (29 November and /or 8 December)


plenary (afternoon session; all three courses):

1 Presentation and discussion of basic results

2 Evaluation:

- Red Mars as a novel/ as a work of literature

- Red Mars as hard core science fiction

- interviews of K.S. Robinson

- reviews of Red Mars (mainly from the Internet)

3 Agreement on further course of project



TIME: ca. 3-4 (5-6) weeks (9 December 99 - 21 January 00)


- group work

- main working hours: afternoons

- morning lessons: no work on project; reserved for coordination and homework for other subjects

- documentation of process: time-table must be presented in advance; project diary is obligatory and must be kept up to date

- intermediate (shorter) plenary session(s) might be necessary

- course teachers will selected group meetings

- presentation, discussion and evaluation of results/products (weekend seminar in the plenary: if possible from Friday afternoon to early Saturday afternoon; accommodation in the "INTERNAT"; 3rd week of January 2000)

- [February/March 2000: panel discussion in English with experts from Germany(KFA Jülich, DASA, DGLR) and the USA ( NASA; Mars Society; Dr. Zubrin?; K.S.Robinson?)


1. Restriction to the aspect of TERRAFORMING MARS, groups focus on different (mainly scientific) aspects of the terraforming process (e.g. biology; biotech/genetic engineering; chemistry; physics; ethics)

2. Widening of the perspective to the whole process of the COLONIZATION OF MARS

3. Comprehensive approach: Free choice from a wide range of themes (science and technology: terraforming; mining; propulsion; rocketry; space elevator etc.; social science: Martian society and external influences; ethics/religion: man playing God on Mars; creative focusing on both scientific and literary aspects, e.g.

creative tasks/literature and film:

- writing Martian poems/songs or a collection of poems/songs (e.g. concept album) on selected Martian themes or from specific perspectives( e.g. landscape poems on terraformed features of Mars; poems by parents of children born on Mars)

- writing short stories about specific aspects of life on Mars (e.g. continuing narrative strings of RED MARS, filling gaps)

- "and on the third day, Sax created ..." - writing a Martian version of GENESIS for the Martins of the distant future (creation myths)

- making film poems about terraforming (e.g. making use of computer animation)

- writing screenplay sequences for selected scenes from RED MARS ( and filming these scenes)

- writing and filming a fictitious discussion between Reds and Greens

- writing screenplays and filming short documentaries on the selected aspects of the colonization/terrafoming process

- writing screenplays and filming scenes for a daily soap dealing with life on Mars

- writing the diary of an early settler/colonist of Mars

- writing a newspaper column composed by an early Martin colonist for a "Terran" newspaper

- writing and designing advertisements and commercials about "holidays on Mars"


creative tasks/science:

- designing a graduated plan for the terraforming of Mars

- designing maps depicting the process of the colonization/terraforming of Mars

-designing models of vehicles, rockets, technological equipment, towns etc.

- Martian weather reports


creative tasks general:

- writing a fictitious constitution for Mars

- writing a "situation vacant" section of a newspaper advertising Martian jobs on Earth

- painting fictitious scenes of Martian life (e.g. landscape before, during and after terrafoming)

- report about the Mars Conference

- designing a project homepage

Home Introduction Table of contents Aims of the project Timetable Analysis of Red Mars Projects Links