8 Common Myths and Misconceptions About Germany
Over the years, through gossip and prejudice people have come up with a stereotype for almost every nation in the world. Different people from different cultures and backgrounds have different ways to cope and adapt to new environments ergo different assumptions for the certain others are raised. If you put it into a game, the question would be naming the first things that come to your mind when one someone mentions i.e Germany?! Arguing about the genesis and foundations of this mystical nonsense is as hopeless as trying to prove it right. It’s rather unlikely for such a genius to exist who can come up with a math formula which genuinely describes a population of over 82 million as ONE.
It doesn’t necessarily mean that only the narrow-minded and uninformed people have such tendencies to generalize one whole country into something you can describe in 5-6 words; on the contrary this is the deed of few self-conscious and well-read elitarians impulsively determining labels for everything and everyone, unevenly sorting them out in different categories so they have a collective idea what a bunch of individuals have supposedly incommon.
However, despite the fact that most of these statements are absurd it’s rather interesting to elaborate the whole concept behind trying to understand the trigger.
Germans have a vast tradition of delicious dishes that differs depending on the region. It’s true that meat is an essential component nevertheless wurst is not the only meat they eat. The impact of foreign countries culture and cuisine has revolutionized their menus through years, given that in every city you will find Turkish, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Italian, French and other restaurants serving their best recipes. The fact that they are still in business means that people do eat there frequently hence the idea of compulsive wurst eaters not so true after all.
Cold and asocial
The thing that some people in Germany might feel more comfortable sticking to a formal attitude around strangers doesn’t prove anything. Germans are ordinary people like the rest, a bit more withdrawn in the beginning yet true fun lovers and adventurous once they’ve opened their heart. So what if they are not so keen on internal jokes and gossips behind ones back, irony or sarcasm. Their genuine and straightforward opinions mostly are a blast.
Germany is famous for all those cultural events happening throughout the year in different parts of the country, gathering millions of people at once, like Oktoberfest. Germans love to party, that’s a fact.
A few successful German people who are always punctual and have plenty of managing skills up their sleeve aren’t really a representative sample of one entire nation. In Germany you have people who obsess about acuity just as some Japanese, American or British people do. On the other hand there are a lot of others who couldn’t care less, ordinary people who live for the day, don’t mind their chaos or getting fired. In the end of the day, even chaos is a way of organizing our lives, frantically speaking.
Hair, hair everywhere
This is just ridiculous. The fact that some fanatic elderly women of tradition don’t shave their legs or armpits isn’t something you can relate to nowadays modern German women living in this country. After all, this is a very personal and intimate matter so generalizing it is insulting.
No to Holocaust
Of course if you go and insult them publicly, in front of people watching you scream and shout, they won’t bother engaging in this ludicrous debate or try to explain and share their point of view. Yet, even though they might be hesitant to remembering the hurtful facts if the conversation is objective and no emotional attacks whatsoever are predicted in the interlocutor’s voice, the chat on the matter can go pretty smooth.
Germans don’t speak English
Germans do speak English, especially among youth it’s highly improbable to find anyone who is not proficient in English. Obviously they’d prefer to talk to you in their own language in their own country however they are quite flexible on this matter and will try everything to understand you and be understood. It’s even amazing how if they notice your German is poor but still you do understand some words, they will automatically switch to answering in German in order for you to improve your skills.
German “free of charge” Universities
There is some truth in this one though. Universities in Germany are mostly free of charge yet there is this thing called a semester contribution which ranges from 250 to 500 Euros and is rather obligatory. This payment provides the benefits of using the Bahn in and around the city you are studying in for free. Also EU students not only aren’t required a visa to enter the state but also pay the equal amount of money on tuition just as every other German student.
If by that you mean all the German man are honest about their intentions, say exactly what they mean and stick to their words and all the German women know what they want then we are opening a new chapter on the issue. Men are men and women are women and frankly that is what they do best, same in every country in this planet. Romance and relationship are the hardest job therefore even for Germans it’s all about an ideal ratio of interpreting who we are and how we really feel.
This article has been written by Liv Luget!