It always surprises me how so many Americans have a real misconception of what German life is like today. Now, I can’t call my self an expert on the modern German life since I don’t live there myself, but I like to make an effort to keep myself up to date on the trends in German culture.
So many of the German clubs and organizations in the US focus on showing the older traditions of Germany. I’m sure you all know what they are… Everyone wearing lederhosen and dirndl, eating bratwurst and schnitzel while all singing volksmusik to the accompaniment of an accordion. Sound familiar? Sure, Germans still take part in some of these older traditions but only at certain times and events. If you visit Germany today you more than likely won’t find the towns full of men wearing lederhosen (unless it is Oktoberfest season).
I understand that it is just fine for clubs in the US to honor these traditions, as it showcases the vast culture of Germany, but why do so many of them refuse to show the progression and incorporate the Germany of today? German citizens seem to have been able to somewhat master this. If you go to Germany to check out Oktoberfest or Karneval, you will see an almost seamless mix of the old and new. Why can’t we do the same here?
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