Germans carry with them a large number of stereotypes, and while many cultural generalizations lean on the comical or absurd, there is one most in Germany can be proud of — knowing how to save money — and the country’s history of frugality now has its own exhibition at the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin.
Most private households, companies, organizations, and government institutions in Germany all have the concept of saving money engrained in their DNA. It is an idea that has been taught and passed down for generations and it is that very teaching that has left the country and its citizens largely unfazed by many recent worldwide economic hardships.
For those wondering how the Germans do it, the ‘Saving – History of a German Virtue’ exhibit at the Deutsches Historisches Museum will be able to answer the question.
“It embarks on a search for the specific character of the German propensity to save, from its origins until today,” the museum says in its introduction. “Its precursors are taken into consideration, as are concrete historical manifestations of saving since the Late Enlightenment.”
Visitors will take a walk through numerous stages of German savings practices with the opening of the first German savings bank in Hamburg in 1778, through the various wartime eras, the separation of the East and West, and up to today’s methods and ideologies.
Saving – History of a German Virtue’ is currently open at the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin and runs through August 26, 2018.