I’m so tired of people telling me German is an “ugly, angry” language. When my German teacher tells us jokes it’s the sweetest, happiest language in the world. When I teach my father the word for daughter he smiles, repeating “Tochter” to himself until he gets it right, and in that moment German sounds like pride. There’s nothing angry or ugly about a language that never says goodbye, only “until we meet again.”
Thank you for this
I think people who say this have only heard German as spoken by movie Nazis. It’s a beautiful language that can sound very soft and sweet. Just because BadGuy McLuftwaffe hisses and barks all those throaty fricatives and glottal stops doesn’t mean they always sound harsh. Go listen to actual German speakers and you’ll see that the stops usually add a melodious rhythm to sentences, and the fricatives are more often like gently rustling leaves than cartoonish loogie hocking. And the vowels are just plain cute.
HELLO, FRIENDS, I AM ABOUT TO GO LINGUISTICS ON THIS
so it’s like the middle ages (post-romans but pre-normans, think beowulf-era) and english is a SUPER GERMANIC LANGUAGE. as in, like, “ofer hronrade hyran scolde gomban gylan”, which admittedly does not look germanic on the page but sure as hell don’t look like english— anyway, it sounds pretty german when you pronounce it
and THEN this dude named william comes in around 1066, he is from normandy, and in normandy they speak FRENCH (or, uh, french-ish) and french is REALLY HEAVILY INFLUENCED by the romans, who conquered that area pretty thoroughly
and so there’s this whole mild culture war between the englisc-speaking native anglo-saxons, who are largely poor peasants, and the françois-speaking norman invaders, who are largely rich assholes (there’s a lot of this in robin hood stories), which is more or less sorted out by a) them having enough sex not to be able to tell who’s who any more b) them being distracted by various crusades and c) probably other things i don’t know
but linguistically what ends up happening is that all the french, latinate words become the words for fancy rich stuff— maison just means “house” in french, but in english mansion means “super fancy rich house”, for example. almost every english word we think of as a “five-dollar word”, with a lot of latinate or greek roots, probably comes from the french.
and this is hugely, hugely reflected by english swearing. the normans are all like, flatulence, buttocks, inferno, and the anglo-saxons are all like FART ARSE HELL. and they also keep their germanic words, with their germanic roots and vowels, for all the crude stuff and the lower-class stuff and the funny stuff and the gross stuff and, yeah, the angry stuff— you’re icily poisonous to someone in long latinate french-derived english, but you yell at them in simple short-voweled germanic english.
someone said we go to work in french, and we come home in german— that’s absolutely true. professional, academic diction is french-derived. casual, intimate, emotional diction is german-derived.
so we hear german as angry and ugly because our ears are used to hearing germanic words in angry or crude contexts— the same way that a lot of us hear french as a “classy” or “posh” language because our ears are used to hearing french-derived words in upper-class contexts! (and also, yes, cultural stereotypes and modern media depictions are quite happy to reinforce this image.)
THIS HAS BEEN: CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING
sometimes tumblr’s US-centric social justice makes me so fucking frustrated. Right now sweden’s third biggest party are literally neo-nazis and our elections couldn’t even get onto trending tags today, goddamit.
Okay, so the post is gaining notes and people are confused, so to explain what the hell is going on:
Swedish elections held were on last Sunday, 14th September. We’ve had a right-leaning government the past eight years and after this there will be a change of power. The new party, Socialdemocrats (S) gained a total of 31% percent. The old party, Moderaterna (M) gained 21%.
Sverigedemokraterna (SD) gained a total of 12.9%. Their policy is racist, Islamophobic, anti-immigration, anti-refugee, anti-diversity, anti-LGBT+, and anti-feminist. Basically, they tick every box on the douchebag lottery.
If you’re here to argue that they’re ~not actually~ Nazis: 1) Fuck you. 2) Fuck the horse the you rode in on. 3) I hope you get stepped on by a moose, you ignorant asswipe.
- they literally started as neo nazis. They have used a Neo-Nazi movement as campaign slogans,
- party members have assaulted immigrants with iron pipes (tw for racialised violence),
- worn Nazi symbols
- supported and helped build Neo-Nazi group SvP.
There’s probably more, but I don’t have links on hand.
They’ve been having rallies and demonstrations all over Sweden, and people have shown up just to turn their back on them and protest (this post explains it better).
In the 2010 elections, SD were pretty much considered no better than neo-Nazis and only got 5.7% votes - it put them in 6th place and was just enough to get them into parliament. In the elections before that, they got about 2.9%. In the past four years, they’ve grown exponentially in Sweden.
They’ve also run extremely extensive PR campaigns, appealing to the youth, kicking out members “exposed” of being racist, (note: these members often end up in SvP) and picking up buzzwords from the Socialdemocrats’ ideology.
29% of votes they gained this year were from swing voters who previously voted M, and the biggest gain have been in the south, in small towns and the countryside:
This is not something that’s just going on in Sweden. Europe has seen an influx of extreme-right parties over the last decade or so, often thinly disguised as a party that puts ‘traditional values’ and ‘national interest’ first.
In Greece and Hungary they’ve already been in power. In Germany, Netherlands, Italy, Greece, Finland France and UK, extreme-right-wing parties have been voted into the EU.
Because here’s the thing: we’ve forgotten what it looks like. We’ve gotten to the point where we’ve turned Nazism into a cartoonish lampoon of goose-stepping, uniforms and moral lessons that “we’ll never be like them~”, ignoring the fact nationalism is not as cut-and-dry two ends of an extreme but exists on a scale.
People have been apologising for SD’s actions for a while now because they’re not considered “extremist enough” to be neo-Nazis, because they don’t share the same beliefs, because they’ve “publicly denounced” SvP.
But the same people still get hurt. Still SD has the institutional and systematic power and privilege to oppress, degrade and humiliate people of colour, which they already have done. Stop making excuses for them. Stop making leeways for right-wing-extremists because that is how they gain tract.
Please spread this.
That’s what corporal punishment is. It’s a failure. It’s a complete breakdown of communication between parent and child. Children are unpredictable, reckless, and occasionally violent. They can drive otherwise rational humans into fits of rage. And I have had moments—many moments, certainly—where I have felt that rage after exhausting every last possible idea to get them to behave: bribery, timeouts, the silent treatment, walking away (they follow you!), distraction, throwing the kids outside (they end up ringing the doorbell a lot), you name it. So I have tried corporal punishment as a final resort, a desperate last stab at closure. That’s an easy way for parents to justify it: You forced me to do this, child. Spanking the kid did nothing for me. It only made me realize what a fucking failure I was. Oh, and the kid still kept yelling.
Spanking and beating your kid teaches your kid to talk with violence. It validates hitting as a legitimate form of communication. Everything is modeled. I have yelled at my kids, and then seen them yell. I have smacked my kid, and then watched her smack someone else. They don’t learn to be good from any of it. They don’t learn to sit still and practice piano sonatas. All they learn is, Hey, this works! And then they go practice what you just preached. Beating a kid creates an atmosphere of toxicity in a house that lingers forever: One beating leads to the next, and to the next, and to the next, until parents don’t even know why they’re beating the kid anymore. They just do. Once it is normalized, it takes root. Parents begin to like the habit. Those pictures of [Adrian] Peterson’s kid? The violence can get worse… much worse… so much worse it’s astonishing.