Tag Archives: Germany

Having Fun with Language on German American Day 2022

By Sabrina Völz

In coun­tries, such as Poland and the Nether­lands, learn­ing Ger­man is on the rise. Yet, in the U.S., it’s been declin­ing for the past hun­dred years. Num­bers of stu­dents learn­ing Ger­man have decreased from rough­ly two mil­lion in 1910 to a lit­tle over one mil­lion today. There­fore, it shouldn’t come as a sur­prise that Ger­man pro­grams have been clos­ing all over the U.S. The very lib­er­al arts col­lege I attend­ed as a bach­e­lor stu­dent in Indi­anola, Iowa – Simp­son Col­lege – elim­i­nat­ed its Ger­man pro­gram a few years ago. So in prepa­ra­tion for this Ger­man Amer­i­can Day (Oct. 6), I decid­ed to attempt to do some PR for German.

Recent­ly, while I was surf­ing the web, I came across some­thing that almost knocked me for a loop. It’s noth­ing bad, just a 58-let­ter word. So let’s hear that drum roll….

That word is: Kurz-fris­ten-energie-ver­sorgungs-sicherungs-maß­nah­men-verord­nung.

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When in Doubt, Ask a Native Author! The Winnetou Debate

By Maryann Henck

After a storm of protests from enraged par­ents con­cern­ing issues of (mis)representation and cul­tur­al appro­pri­a­tion in the new children’s movie, The Young Chief Win­netou (2022), the Ger­man pub­lish­er, Ravens­burg­er Ver­lag, with­drew the com­pan­ion book and puz­zle to the film. Soon there­after, the main Ger­man TV sta­tion (ARD) announced they would no longer broad­cast the pop­u­lar Win­netou movies from the 1960s based on Karl May’s nov­els. Every­one seems to have their take on the cur­rent con­tro­ver­sy; yet, there’s been some crit­i­cism regard­ing issues of pater­nal­ism due to the lack of Native voic­es in the debate. That’s why the Amer­i­can Stud­ies Blog has gone direct­ly to the source and inter­viewed Drew Hay­den Tay­lor acclaimed Cana­di­an Anish­naabe author, fre­quent fly­er to Ger­many, and cre­ator of the doc­u­men­tary, Search­ing for Win­netou (2018).

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Getting Germany Back on Track

By Markus Ziener

The Mar­shall Plan has become syn­ony­mous for mas­sive help, for bring­ing about a her­cu­la­neum task and hav­ing a coun­try rise again from the ash­es. Orig­i­nal­ly designed to help Europe get back on track after the dev­as­ta­tions of World War II, it has a much broad­er mean­ing today. In dis­cus­sions about how to rebuild Ukraine at some point in the future, there’s again talk of the need for a Mar­shall Plan. How­ev­er, it’s worth­while to take a step back and look at what the orig­i­nal Mar­shall Plan was all about.

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Homeschooling and the Pandemic

By Mukta Dharmapurikar, Johanna Eichler, and Aaron Ming Meyer

While her neigh­bors rush down the street to catch the school bus, 14-year-old Lilah Had­den starts her school day at home. After spend­ing the morn­ing on math and cre­ative writ­ing with her moth­er, she takes a vio­lin class online, fin­ish­ing her day with inde­pen­dent read­ing. For two years now, home­school­ing has worked well for her. “I’m get­ting to … learn more of what I actu­al­ly want to learn about,” Lilah says, not­ing that she’s par­tic­u­lar­ly pas­sion­ate about music. But if it weren’t for the pan­dem­ic, the idea to school at home would nev­er have crossed her mind.

Covid-19 forced stu­dents around the globe to learn with­out phys­i­cal­ly going to school, as entire states and coun­tries went through long peri­ods of lock­down. It’s sparked new inter­est in home­school­ing alter­na­tives in places rang­ing from Des Moines, Iowa, to Ham­burg, Ger­many, where home­school­ing has been banned for over a cen­tu­ry. Stu­dents have dis­cov­ered that alter­na­tive school arrange­ments can offer more flex­i­bil­i­ty to man­age dif­fer­ences, pan­dem­ic stress, and distractions.

Home­school­ing — Gustoff fam­i­ly in Des Moines

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Conifer Wood Makes You Feel Good — Christmas Trees in Germany and the U.S.

By Veronika Heinrich

Pho­to Cred­it: “Christ­mas Pyra­mid Nativ­i­ty Scene” by Kitsuta

 

O Christ­mas Tree, O Christ­mas Tree,

Your boughs can teach a lesson

That con­stant faith and hope sublime

Lend strength and com­fort through all time.

O Christ­mas Tree, O Christ­mas Tree,

Your boughs can teach a lesson.

 

 

When I was a child, Christ­mas meant presents. It also meant going to our small town Christ­mas mar­ket. There, we board­ed a tiny train to take us for rides around the church. San­ta then showed up and gave us choco­late San­tas, deep-fried pas­tries, and gin­ger­bread – any­thing sweet a child’s heart could wish for. Of course, there was also a beau­ti­ful Christ­mas tree. How­ev­er, we had some­thing that made my Christ­mas expe­ri­ence tru­ly dif­fer­ent from that of most chil­dren in the Unit­ed States – a Christ­mas pyramid.

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The Reviews Are In: Babylon Berlin Sets the Scene for Unusually Visionary Television, Intercontinentally

By Hannah Quinque

CC BY-SA 4.0, Lear 21

Grant­ed, Baby­lon Berlin has at its dis­po­si­tion all the means nec­es­sary to become a true block­buster. But it isn’t every day the view­er gets to expe­ri­ence just how phe­nom­e­nal­ly a big bud­get can be spent on a TV series – with­out com­pro­mis­es between bom­bas­tic mon­tages and cin­e­matog­ra­phy for lovers, between fast-paced sto­ry devel­op­ment and cred­i­bly com­plex char­ac­ters, that is.

For Baby­lon Berlin, pro­duced in Ger­many by Ger­man pro­duc­tion com­pa­nies, the com­mit­ment to an unflinch­ing and unre­served depic­tion of a nation on the verge of fas­cism pays off. As a bit of an inside tip, the show’s spec­tac­u­lar efforts are appre­ci­at­ed far beyond its coun­try of ori­gin, as demon­strat­ed by almost exclu­sive­ly glow­ing U.S. reviews.

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