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Music

The €789m Elbphilharmonie is an astonishing building: unpredictable, unforgiving and not entirely beautiful, but also generous, open and profound in its relationship with the docks, the city and the sky."  (Financial Times, 12/2/16; Deutsche Welle, 1/9/17; The New York Times, 1/10/17; Los Angeles Times, 3/23/17)

"Tonight at six I will listen to the Furtwängler concert on the radio," Hermann da Fonseca-Wollheim wrote to his wife Käthe, while imprisoned at Buchenwald. "Why don't you, too, turn on the radio on Sundays, so we can think of each other fervently."  (The New York Times, 5/4/16)

From the land of "long entertainment," Wagner's Ring Cycle is the original binge-watching experience.  (The Washington Post, 4/14/16)

"Once again, if you have a little time for Nena, she’ll sing a song for you." Genau jetzt!  (Slate, 4/13/16)

In memoriam: Roger Cicero (1970-2016), popular jazz vocalist who represented Germany in the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest.  (Deutsche Welle, 3/29/16)

Ready for "a mind-melting 24 hours"? Run, don't walk, to one of the Met's three NYC campuses to hear Karlheinz Stockhausen's Klang.  (The Guardian, 3/18/16; The New York Times, 3/27/16)

"Nerd's musical ensemble" Geekchester welcomes you to the wonderful world of German engineering.  (The Local, 3/11/16)

"Megaloh is a true product of the digital music age. Praised by his peers and listened to by millions of fans on YouTube and streaming services, the 35-year-old still has to work as a warehouseman to make ends meet."  (Handelblatt - Global Edition, 3/8/16)

See and hear how Wagner's "Ring" was forged, in a new exhibition at NYC's Morgan Library & Museum.  (The New York Times, 1/28/16; The New York Review of Books, 2/25/16)

"In the nineteen-seventies, the German supergroup Harmonia made music that sounds as though it could have been made this morning."  (The New Yorker, 1/20/16)

Here's how "a song about a cold-blooded serial murderer written by a Marxist playwright and a leftwing composer for a musical that aimed to lay bare the hypocrisies of bourgeois morality went on to become a huge commercial success."  (Financial Times, 1/15/16)

"In many respects David Bowie was like Berlin: sometimes over-hyped and overrated, but undeniably one-of-a-kind....Berlin is mourning one of its favorite adoptive sons."  (Deutsche Welle, 1/11/16)

In memoriam: Kurt Masur (1927-2015), "musician, humanist and a symbol of transformation in the events leading to the fall of the Berlin Wall." He led the Leipzig Gewandhausorchester and the New York Philharmonic. (Deutsche Welle, 12/19/15; The New York Times, 12/19/15; The Guardian, 12/20/15; The Boston Globe, 1/2/2016)





Art & Design

Terror attack in Berlin
Michael Kimmelman and Thomas de Monchaus unpack the layers of meaning at Breitscheidplatz, heart of western Berlin's city center and site of the December 19 terror attack.  (The New York Times, 12/20/16; The New Yorker, 1/5/17)


How did the Protestant Reformation influence visual arts? 2017 offers numerous opportunities for you to see for yourself.  (Financial Times, 12/26/16)

Director Christian Schwochow has made a new film about the life of painter Paula Modersohn-Becker. (Deutsche Welle, 12/15/16)

Hanne Darboven's monumental installation "Kulturgeschichte 1880-1983" is on display now at the Dia Art Foundation. (The New York Times, 12/8/16)

"The €789m Elbphilharmonie is an astonishing building: unpredictable, unforgiving and not entirely beautiful, but also generous, open and profound in its relationship with the docks, the city and the sky."  (Financial Times, 12/2/16; Deutsche Welle, 1/9/17; The New York Times, 1/10/17; Los Angeles Times, 3/23/17)

"Making Heimat: Germany, Arrival Country" knocks down walls at the Venice Architecture Biennale. (Metropolis, 5/25/16; The New York Times, 5/26/16)

Since the Pergamon Altar on Berlin's Museum Island will be under renovation until 2019, here's the next best thing.  (Deutsche Welle, 5/25/15)

Consider the short but fruitful history of Black Mountain College, where Bildung met Erziehung in rural North Carolina.  (Los Angeles Review of Books, 5/16/16)

Here's an inspired way of dealing with the "disgraced statues" of Germany's political past.  (Deutsche Welle, 7/9/15; The Local Germany, 7/23/15; Deutsche Welle, 9/10/15; Deutsche Welle, 4/28/16; The Art Newspaper, 5/5/16)

GDR design groupies, the Kulturbrauerei has an exhibition for you!  (Deutsche Welle, 4/12/16)

"Does my family own a painting looted by Nazis?" Despite researchers' best efforts, it's often impossible to say for sure.  (The New York Times, 4/5/16)

Looking for Berlin's best street? Hans Kollhof makes the case for Karl-Marx-Allee, "the only example of German urban planning and architecture that continues the great tradition of the 19th century."  (CityLab, 3/31/16)

On display at the Robert Mann Gallery in NYC: vintage photos by Elisabeth Hase. She "began to photograph as the New Vision took hold, the visual language of modernism that has never disappeared from sight as completely as she did."  (The New York Times, 3/31/16)

Here's another Taschen book to covet: Germany Around 1900, featuring 800 photochrom postcard images "drenched in a kind of enchanted Romanticism."  (Hyperallergic, 3/8/16)

Thanks to artist-activists Nora al-Badri and and Jan Nikolai Nelles, you too can create your own copy of the bust of Queen Nefertiti.  (The New York Times, 3/1/16; Hyperallergic, 3/9/16)

Anke Feuchtenberger "pushed German comics into a new realm, redefining the medium in cultural, political, and aesthetic terms."  (World Literature Today, 3/2016)

The Humboldt Forum and its skeptics
Moving Berlin's collections of non-western art from suburban Dahlem to the new Humboldt Forum "is not driven by the needs of the collection; instead it is being used for a different purpose: to create another Berlin spectacle."  (The New York Review of Books, 2/29/16)

The Italian Renaissance loomed large in 19th- and early 20th-century Germans' historical imagination (explains a new study by Martin Ruehl).  (The Art Newspaper, 2/25/16) 

"An exhibition of Paula Modersohn-Becker’s art is almost by definition a bittersweet event. It’s thrilling to watch this pioneering German painter restlessly experiment with color and surface in the form of portraits, landscapes, still lifes and scenes of peasant women and children she made during her short time on earth."  (The New York Times, 2/25/16)

Germany's newest subway line, the Wehrhahn in Düsseldorf, transforms "commuter drudgery into art appreciation."  (The New York Times, 2/19/16)

"Art from the Holocaust," featuring 100 works from the collection of Yad Vashem, is now on display at the German Historical Museum in Berlin.  (The New York Times, 1/22/16; Deutsche Welle, 1/25/16)

Meet Maria Sibylla Merian, gifted artist and naturalist whose work expanded "the male-dominated scientific world of the late seventeenth century."  (The Atlantic, 1/19/16)

"Promoted in his time (1674-1739) as 'The Greatest German Living'," Matthias Buchinger was an astonishingly talented calligrapher as well as performer.  (The New York Times, 1/14/16)




 
Books & Ideas

"This is without a doubt the WORST writing I ever laid eyes on": Marlene Dietrich's final performance space may have been the pages of her books.  (The New Yorker, 12/26/16)

Walking in Berlin by Franz Hessel (first published in 1929 and newly translated by Amanda DeMarco) presents "a portrait of a city on the brink of irrevocable change."  (The Independent, 12/14/16; The Guardian, 3/26/17; Los Angeles Review of Books, 5/5/17)

"The extent of narcotic consumption by Nazi soldiers and Hitler has surprised even those who have spent decades researching this era." (The New York Times, 12/9/16; The New York Review of Books, 3/9/17; The Guardian, 5/2/17)

Introducing Germany's 2016 Word of the Year....postfaktisch (post-truth).  (Deutsche Welle, 12/9/16)

"The Frankfurt School knew Trump was coming."  (The New Yorker, 12/5/16)

Günter Grass’s "greatest regret seems not to have been that life per se is finite but that creativity is too, and the loss of his earlier deftness grieved him." Vonne Endlichkeit is now available in English (Of All That Ends, trans. Breon Mitchell). (The Arts Desk, 12/4/16; The Spectator, 12/31/16)

"Mr. Ullrich offers a fascinating Shakespearean parable about how the confluence of circumstance, chance, a ruthless individual and the willful blindness of others can transform a country." (The New York Times, 9/27/16; The Washington Post, 9/28/16; Deutsche Welle, 9/30/16)

Memoirs of a Polar Bear by Yoko Tawada, translated by Susan Bernofsky, "hums with beautiful strangeness"—and now it's won the inaugural Warwick Prize for Women in Translation.  (Granta, 9/22/2016; The New York Times, 11/25/16; Words Without Borders, 12/2016)

What better time to reacquaint yourself with the life and work of Jürgen Habermas? A new biography is here to help. (The Nation, 9/14/16; The Guardian, 2/15/17; The New York Review of Books, 3/23/17; Boston Review, 4/12/17)

Another Marx biography? Gareth Stedman Jones demonstrates an impressive command of his subject in Karl Marx: Greatness and Illusion.  (Financial Times, 8/5/16; The New York Times, 10/21/16; The Nation, 2/8/17)

Historian and journalist Volker Ullrich's well-crafted biography of Adolf Hitler is now available in English, translated by Jefferson Chase.  (London Review of Books, 6/2/16; The Wall Street Journal, 9/23/16; The New York Times, 10/14/16)

Dive into Stuart Jeffries' Grand Hotel Abyss, the witty history of the Frankfurt School that we've all been waiting for.  (The Washington Post, 9/28/16; The Guardian, 11/3/16; The New York Review of Books, 3/23/17)

The Protestant Reformation turns 500
"Get ready to start hearing a lot about Martin Luther..." In advance of the Protestant Reformation's 500th anniversary, Lyndal Roper has written a thought-provoking biography of a difficult hero. (Literary Review, 6/2016; The Spectator, 6/11/16; The Weekly Standard, 5/5/17)

Vicki Baum's bestselling Grand Hotel (originally published as Menschen im Hotel in 1929) "spoke to the anxieties of Weimar society—and of the world at large—about modern life."  (The New York Review of Books, 5/9/16)

Author Thomas Bernhard "is a gleeful butcher who makes the best charcuterie from the most forlorn and desiccated roadkill." Read Goethe Dies (translated by James Reidel) and find out more.  (The Nation, 5/5/16)

Daniel Blue's The Making of Friedrich Nietzsche gives us a portrait of the artist as a (very) young man.  (The Spectator, 4/30/16; Literary Review, 6/2016)

"But is it really vital for the understanding of the darkest chapter of German history to know what Hitler had for lunch before shooting himself in the head in the Führerbunker with his Walther PPK pistol in 1945 (spaghetti with a light tomato sauce)? Probably not."  (The Washington Post, 4/27/16)

Oh, the power of poetry: Jan Böhmermann sparks debate about the legal boundaries of freedom of expression
, confirms Recep Tayyip Erdogan's inability to take a joke, and creates a major diplomatic headache for Angela Merkel. (Deutsche Welle, 4/8/16; Deutsche Welle, 4/11/16; Exberliner, 4/11/16; The Guardian, 4/11/16; The Washington Post, 4/12/16; Spiegel Online - International, 4/12/16)

Alfred Rosenberg's diary was lost for nearly six decades—and then it reemerged in a small publishing house in upstate New York.  (The New York Times, 3/30/16; The Guardian, 5/5/16) 

Not up for reading three magisterial volumes on Kafka's life? Biographer Reiner Stach has thoughtfully assembled Is that Kafka? 99 Finds for us instead.  (The New Republic, 3/22/16; The New Yorker, 3/22/16; The Washington Post, 3/23/16)

Don't believe the hype—Berlin isn't "all sex, all the time," and Katy Derbyshire has the literary examples to prove it!  (Literary Hub, 3/17/16)

"Now, in the era of unabashed and unprecedented mass surveillance, is the time to read East German literature." English readers, meet Wolfgang Hilbig.  (Exberliner, 10/15/15; Boston Review, 3/15/16; Los Angeles Review of Books, 4/11/16)

Here's another Taschen book to covet: Germany Around 1900, featuring 800 photochrom postcard images "drenched in a kind of enchanted Romanticism."  (Hyperallergic, 3/8/16)

Klaus Mann—"writer, lecturer, provocateur, world traveler, anti-Nazi militant"—is the subject of a new biography by Frederic Spotts.  (The Guardian, 3/6/16; The Weekly Standard, 3/28/16; The Irish Times, 4/16/16; The Barnes and Noble Review, 6/6/16)

The reviews keep coming in for Timothy Snyder's provocative Black Earth: The Holocaust as History.  (The New York Times, 9/3/15; The Guardian, 9/10/15; Times Higher Education, 9/10/15; The New Yorker, 9/21/15; The Daily Beast, 9/27/15; The New York Review of Books, 10/8/15; The Chronicle Review, 3/6/16)

Martin Kitchen dismantles "the myth of the good Nazi" in Speer: Hitler's Architect.  (The Wall Street Journal, 12/23/15; The New Criterion, 3/2016; History Today, 3/3/16)

Anke Feuchtenberger "pushed German comics into a new realm, redefining the medium in cultural, political, and aesthetic terms."  (World Literature Today, 3/2016)

Skip Vincent Perez's new film Alone in Berlin and read Hans Fallada's novel instead.  (The Guardian, 2/15/16; Variety, 2/15/16; NPR, 1/12/17)

For the protagonist of Darryl Pinckney's novel Black Deutschland, "Berlin meant white boys who wanted to atone for Germany’s crimes by loving a black boy like me.”  (The New York Times, 1/28/16; The New York Times, 2/5/16; The Atlantic, 2/15/16)

"What's great about Goethe?" So very glad you asked!  (Open Culture, 1/28/16; The New Yorker, 2/1/16)

Summer Before the Dark, by Volker Weidermann (translated by Carol Brown Janeway), is a novel about Stefan Zweig and Joseph Roth, "men who were expelled from history by the Nazis and had to watch helplessly as it steamrollered them into oblivion."  (New Statesman, 1/25/16)

Ever wonder what it would be like to walk for 600 miles in Werner Herzog's shoes? Of Walking in Ice has been reissued by the University of Minnesota Press. (Slate, 5/5/15; The Nation, 1/7/16)

To publish or not? Mein Kampf in the Internet age
It's 2016, and (a 2,000-page, heavily annotated) Mein Kampf will be on sale in German bookstores for the first time in 70 years. (The Economist, 12/19/15; Deutsche Welle, 12/29/15; The New Yorker, 12/30/15; The Guardian, 1/1/16; The New Yorker, 1/12/16; Spiegel Online - International, 1/15/16)





Film

Director Christian Schwochow has made a new film about the life of painter Paula Modersohn-Becker. (Deutsche Welle, 12/15/16)

In memoriam: Götz George (1938-2016), award-winning film and TV actor best known as Tatort Kommissar Horst Schimanski.  (Deutsche Welle, 6/26/16; The Hollywood Reporter, 6/27/16)

Maren Ade captivated Cannes—and then Oscar voters—with her new film, Toni Erdmann, "the world’s first genuinely funny, 162-minute German comedy of embarrassment."  (The Hollywood Reporter, 5/13/16; The New York Times, 5/22/16; The New York Times, 12/28/16)

Look Who's Back (Er ist wieder da): "yes, this movie exists, and despite (or perhaps because of) its genre-defying weirdness, you won’t be able to look away."  (Slate, 5/13/16)

Christian Braad Thomsen brings us a "confused, partial, awkwardly constructed tribute" to the ever-fascinating Rainer Werner Fassbinder.  (Artforum, 4/25/16; Film Comment, 4/27/16; The New York Times, 4/28/16)

"In Germany, The Jungle Book (1967) is the biggest movie of all time."  (The Hollywood Reporter, 4/22/16)

Deutschland 83 wasn't a hit at home, but its success abroad is nonetheless opening "the floodgate for a German TV renaissance."  (The Guardian, 2/23/16)

Skip Vincent Perez's new film Alone in Berlin and read Hans Fallada's novel instead.  (The Guardian, 2/15/16; Variety, 2/15/16; NPR, 1/12/17)

No hiking the Pacific Crest Trail here: Nicolette Krebitz's Wild "tells a visceral tale of a young urban woman drawn to nature in a way that will shock mere tree-huggers."  (The Hollywood Reporter, 1/23/16)

Why do we find ourselves rooting for the "bad guys" in recent on-screen depictions of East Germany?  (New Statesman, 1/15/16)





Theater

From the land of "long entertainment," Wagner's Ring Cycle is the original binge-watching experience.  (The Washington Post, 4/14/16)

See a recreation of the Lichtburg rehearsal space and much more, in a Bonn exhibition devoted to the work of Pina Bausch.  (Deutsche Welle, 3/4/16)

See and hear how Wagner's "Ring" was forged, in a new exhibition at NYC's Morgan Library & Museum.  (The New York Times, 1/28/16; The New York Review of Books, 2/25/16)





History

There's hardly a shortage of memorials that reflect on Berlin's National Socialist past—but that didn't stop local entrepreneurs from recreating Hitler's bunker and offering paid tours.  (The New York Times, 12/28/16)

The massacre of the Herero and Nama people is widely recognized as the first genocide of the 20th century. How should Germans today work to heal this "colonial-era wound"?  (The Guardian, 12/25/16; The New York Times, 1/21/17)

Terror attack in Berlin
Michael Kimmelman and Thomas de Monchaus unpack the layers of meaning at Breitscheidplatz, heart of western Berlin's city center and site of the December 19 terror attack.  (The New York Times, 12/20/16; The New Yorker, 1/5/17)

"No people ever recognize their dictator in advance,” Dorothy Thompson wrote in 1935. “He never stands for election on the platform of dictatorship. He always represents himself as the instrument [of] the Incorporated National Will.” (PRI, 12/13/16)

Lügenpresse, Volksverräter, and Umvolkung are back. Germany's radical right has revived terms once fatally associated with National Socialism.  (The Washington Post, 12/9/16)

"The extent of narcotic consumption by Nazi soldiers and Hitler has surprised even those who have spent decades researching this era." (The New York Times, 12/9/16; The New York Review of Books, 3/9/17; The Guardian, 5/2/17)

"The Frankfurt School knew Trump was coming."  (The New Yorker, 12/5/16)

Dive into Stuart Jeffries' Grand Hotel Abyss, the witty history of the Frankfurt School that we've all been waiting for.  (The Washington Post, 9/28/16; The Guardian, 11/3/16)

"Mr. Ullrich offers a fascinating Shakespearean parable about how the confluence of circumstance, chance, a ruthless individual and the willful blindness of others can transform a country." (The New York Times, 9/27/16; The Washington Post, 9/28/16; Deutsche Welle, 9/30/16)

Another Marx biography? Gareth Stedman Jones demonstrates an impressive command of his subject in Karl Marx: Greatness and Illusion.  (Financial Times, 8/5/16; The New York Times, 10/21/16; The Nation, 2/8/17)

Historian and journalist Volker Ullrich's well-crafted biography of Adolf Hitler is now available in English, translated by Jefferson Chase.  (London Review of Books, 6/2/16; The Wall Street Journal, 9/23/16; The New York Times, 10/14/16)

The Protestant Reformation turns 500
"Get ready to start hearing a lot about Martin Luther..." In advance of the Protestant Reformation's 500th anniversary, Lyndal Roper has written a thought-provoking biography of a difficult hero. (Literary Review, 6/2016; The Spectator, 6/11/16; The Weekly Standard, 5/5/17)

In memoriam: Fritz Stern (1926-2016): historian of modern Germany, long-serving professor at Columbia University, trusted advisor to policymakers on both sides of the Atlantic.  (The New York Times, 5/18/16; Deutsche Welle, 5/19/16; The Guardian, 5/23/16; The Economist, 5/25/16)

Consider the short but fruitful history of Black Mountain College, where Bildung met Erziehung in rural North Carolina.  (Los Angeles Review of Books, 5/16/16)

"Altenwerder had to die so that Hamburg could live": how a historic fishing village became an automatic container port.  (The Guardian, 5/11/16)

"Tonight at six I will listen to the Furtwängler concert on the radio," Hermann da Fonseca-Wollheim wrote to his wife Käthe, while imprisoned at Buchenwald. "Why don't you, too, turn on the radio on Sundays, so we can think of each other fervently."  (The New York Times, 5/4/16)

Here's an inspired way of dealing with the "disgraced statues" of Germany's political past.  (Deutsche Welle, 7/9/15; The Local Germany, 7/23/15; Deutsche Welle, 9/10/15; Deutsche Welle, 4/28/16; The Art Newspaper, 5/5/16)

"But is it really vital for the understanding of the darkest chapter of German history to know what Hitler had for lunch before shooting himself in the head in the Führerbunker with his Walther PPK pistol in 1945 (spaghetti with a light tomato sauce)? Probably not."  (The Washington Post, 4/27/16)

"The thing I continue to find striking," says Neil MacGregor, "is that in the centre of Berlin you keep coming across monuments to national shame. I think that is unique in the world."  (The Guardian, 4/17/16)

In memoriam: Hans-Dietrich Genscher (1927-2016), long-serving foreign minister, architect of German reunification, respected elder statesman.  (Deutsche Welle, 4/1/16; Financial Times, 4/1/16; The New York Times, 4/1/16; The Washington Post, 4/1/16; AICGS, 4/8/16)

Alfred Rosenberg's diary was lost for nearly six decades—and then it reemerged in a small publishing house in upstate New York.  (The New York Times, 3/30/16; The Guardian, 5/5/16)

"What does Ulrike Meinhof's legacy reveal about perceptions of radical women?"  (Latterly, 3/18/16)

Here's another Taschen book to covet: Germany Around 1900, featuring 800 photochrom postcard images "drenched in a kind of enchanted Romanticism."  (Hyperallergic, 3/8/16)

The reviews keep coming in for Timothy Snyder's provocative Black Earth: The Holocaust as History.  (The New York Times, 9/3/15; The Guardian, 9/10/15; Times Higher Education, 9/10/15; The New Yorker, 9/21/15; The Daily Beast, 9/27/15; The New York Review of Books, 10/8/15; The Chronicle Review, 3/6/16)

Martin Kitchen dismantles "the myth of the good Nazi" in Speer: Hitler's Architect.  (The Wall Street Journal, 12/23/15; The New Criterion, 3/2016; History Today, 3/3/16)

The Italian Renaissance loomed large in 19th- and early 20th-century Germans' historical imagination (explains a new study by Martin Ruehl).  (The Art Newspaper, 2/25/16) 

"The year 1907 was a pivotal one for German noise."  (BBC, 1/4/16)

To publish or not? Mein Kampf in the Internet age
It's 2016, and (a 2,000-page, heavily annotated) Mein Kampf will be on sale in German bookstores for the first time in 70 years. (The Economist, 12/19/15; Deutsche Welle, 12/29/15; The New Yorker, 12/30/15; The Guardian, 1/1/16; The New Yorker, 1/12/16; Spiegel Online - International, 1/15/16)




Et Cetera

Terror attack in Berlin
"Out of the bloody carnage of violence and hate of Berlin on the Monday before Christmas comes the enviable impression of a country that is true to the values of liberal Europe."  (The Guardian, 12/21/16)

Terror attack in Berlin
"It is difficult to think of an image that evokes the things worth defending more beautifully than a warm Christmas market beckoning all comers—locals and tourists, Christians, Muslims, and atheists—to spend an hour or two strolling among brightly lit stalls and drinking hot tea or mulled wine with a newfound friend."  (Slate, 12/20/16)

Terror attack in Berlin
Michael Kimmelman and Thomas de Monchaus unpack the layers of meaning at Breitscheidplatz, heart of western Berlin's city center and site of the December 19 terror attack.  (The New York Times, 12/20/16; The New Yorker, 1/5/17)

"Germany is a secular country, but the German legal framework approves of institutionalized religions in a biased way." Alexander Görlach explains why Islam gets second-class status within Germany.  (The New York Times, 12/15/16)

"In Europe right now, there is one prediction that everyone is happy to make: In 2017, the Russian government will mount an open campaign to sway the German elections."  (The Washington Post, 12/12/16)

Lügenpresse, Volksverräter, and Umvolkung are back. Germany's radical right has revived terms once fatally associated with National Socialism.  (The Washington Post, 12/9/16)

Charles Lane has a lesson in Realpolitik for Angela Merkel: "No government can do more good than it can sustain politically."  (The Washington Post, 12/7/16)

"The Frankfurt School knew Trump was coming."  (The New Yorker, 12/5/16)

Pity the Brits: "A people admired by many Germans as essentially cautious, sceptical, small-c conservatives had flamboyantly gambled their economic future."  (The Guardian, 6/28/16)

What is (organic) German? The migration crisis has intensified an age-old debate.  (The New York Times, 5/26/16; The Economist, 5/28/16)

Böhmermann, Erdogan, and the politics of satire
Jan Böhmermann chats with the editorial board of The New York Times.  (The New York Times, 5/4/16)

Q: What do Christopher Clark, Timothy Garton Ash, and Neil MacGregor have in common? A: Anglosplaining for Germans.  (1843, 5/3/16)

"The most German of traits, he said, is this need to correct people, no matter how trivial the point."  (1843, 5/3/16)

"It isn't easy to be creative and imaginative with a product that contains four ingredients..." Is 500 years enough for the Reinheitsgebot (Spiegel Online - International, 4/21/16; The Economist, 4/23/16)

In Dresden, "one of Germany’s most rarefied art and cultural scenes" coexists uncomfortably with the country's "most notorious populist movement."  (The Wall Street Journal, 4/20/16)

Böhmermann, Erdogan, and the politics of satire
"Instead of holding up a mirror to the country, which is allegedly the function of cabaret, Böhmermann has sent the country into a hall of mirrors and has provoked all kinds of strange reactions."  (Spiegel Online - International, 4/15/16)

Berlin isn't as cool as it used to be—or maybe it's just too cool?, 2016 edition.  (Slate, 4/15/16)

Böhmermann, Erdogan, and the politics of satire
Oh, the power of poetry: Jan Böhmermann sparks debate about the legal boundaries of freedom of expression, confirms Recep Tayyip Erdogan's inability to take a joke, and creates a major diplomatic headache for Angela Merkel. (Deutsche Welle, 4/8/16; Deutsche Welle, 4/11/16; Exberliner, 4/11/16; The Guardian, 4/11/16; The Washington Post, 4/12/16; Spiegel Online - International, 4/12/16)

#RefugeesWelcome
"Whether the nation deals successfully with the migration challenge or succumbs to fear and nationalism will largely be determined by how communities like Siegsdorf — those directly charged with welcoming the migrants — confront the challenges ahead." (The New York Times, 4/6/16)

Böhmermann, Erdogan, and the politics of satire
"Achtung! Germans on the rise, but this time we are fucking nice!"  (The Local, 4/1/16)

In memoriam: Hans-Dietrich Genscher (1927-2016), long-serving foreign minister, architect of German reunification, respected elder statesman.  (Deutsche Welle, 4/1/16; Financial Times, 4/1/16; The New York Times, 4/1/16; The Washington Post, 4/1/16; AICGS, 4/8/16)

#RefugeesWelcome
Angela Merkel's "impractical humanism will likely cost her the chancellorship," writes Daniel Kehlmann. "But, at the same time, her actions saved the soul of Europe."  (The New York Times, 4/1/16)


"Danger comes especially from those who perhaps should know better, but make anti-democratic, radical conservatives salonfähig. That is the real lesson to be taken from Weimar Germany." (Moyers & Company, 3/19/16)

In memoriam: Guido Westerwelle (1961-2016), former foreign minister and FDP leader. "He stood for liberalism in politics and his private life, a liberalism that was focused on only one thing: freedom."  (Deutsche Welle, 3/18/16; The Guardian, 3/18/16; The New York Times, 3/18/16)

"A good night for incumbents and xenophobes": reflections on the March 13 elections in Baden-Württemberg, Sachsen-Anhalt, and Rheinland-Pfalz.  (Bloomberg, 3/131/6; The Economist, 3/13/16; The New York Times, 3/14/16; Spiegel Online - International, 3/14/16)

Backpfeifengesicht, Verschlimmbesserung and more—here's "why the German language has so many great words."  (The Conversation, 3/7/16)

Tried a Spezi lately? "It gives you the feeling of a Bavarian holiday without the alcohol."  (The Wall Street Journal, 3/9/16)

Auf Wiedersehen, heile Welt? "It is not clear what kind of world will replace the wholesome one the Germans once dreamed up. But it will be a rougher one."  (The Economist, 3/5/16; Spiegel Online - International, 3/8/16)

#RefugeesWelcome
Are refugees still welcome? "The screenplay for Merkel's downfall hasn't yet been written, but an initial rough draft already exists."  (The Economist, 1/23/15; The Atlantic, 1/25/16; Spiegel Online - International, 1/25/16)

"Germany reacts to being named world's best country in the most German way."  (The Washington Post, 1/21/16)

#RefugeesWelcome
"New Year's Eve in Cologne rapidly descended into a chaotic free-for-all involving sexual assault and theft, most of it apparently committed by foreigners. It has launched a bitter debate over immigration and refugees in Germany—one that could change the country."  (Spiegel Online - International, 1/8/16; The New York Times, 1/9/16; The New Yorker, 1/10/16; The New York Times, 1/15/16)

#RefugeesWelcome
"Will asylum seekers revitalize the crumbling housing projects of eastern Germany—or turn them into ghettos?" And how are immigrants faring in the "hipster ghetto" of Neukölln?  (Foreign Policy, 1/6/16; Foreign Policy, 1/18/16)