|c. 100 – c. 150 million worldwide|
|Regions with significant populations|
|394,138 [ citation needed ]|
|153,245 [ citation needed ]|
|50,863 [ citation needed ]|
|33,302 [ citation needed ]|
1/3rd Roman Catholic
1/3rd Roman Catholic
|Related ethnic groups|
|other Germanic peoples|
Germans (German : Deutsche) are a Germanic ethnic group native to Central Europe, who share a common German ancestry, culture and history. German is the shared mother tongue of a substantial majority of ethnic Germans.
German is a West Germanic language that is mainly spoken in Central Europe. It is the most widely spoken and official or co-official language in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, South Tyrol (Italy), the German-speaking Community of Belgium, and Liechtenstein. It is also one of the three official languages of Luxembourg and a co-official language in the Opole Voivodeship in Poland. The languages which are most similar to German are the other members of the West Germanic language branch: Afrikaans, Dutch, English, the Frisian languages, Low German/Low Saxon, Luxembourgish, and Yiddish. There are also strong similarities in vocabulary with Danish, Norwegian and Swedish, although those belong to the North Germanic group. German is the second most widely spoken Germanic language, after English.
The Germanic peoples were an ethnolinguistic group of Northern European origin identified by Roman-era authors as distinct from neighbouring Celtic peoples, and identified in modern scholarship as speakers, at least for the most part, of early Germanic languages.
Central Europe is the region comprising the central part of Europe. Central Europe occupies continuous territories that are otherwise sometimes considered parts of Western Europe, Southern Europe, and Eastern Europe. The concept of Central Europe is based on a common historical, social, and cultural identity.
The English term Germans has historically referred to the German-speaking population of the Holy Roman Empire since the Late Middle Ages.Ever since the outbreak of the Protestant Reformation within the Holy Roman Empire, German society has been characterized by a Catholic-Protestant divide.
The Holy Roman Empire was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in Western and Central Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars. The largest territory of the empire after 962 was the Kingdom of Germany, though it also came to include the neighboring Kingdom of Bohemia, the Kingdom of Burgundy, the Kingdom of Italy, and numerous other territories.
The Late Middle Ages or Late Medieval Period was the period of European history lasting from 1250 to 1500 AD. The Late Middle Ages followed the High Middle Ages and preceded the onset of the early modern period.
Christianity is the largest religion in Germany, comprising an estimated 57% of the country's population in 2017. The second largest religion in Germany is Islam, with around 4 million adherents, almost all of whom have full or partial foreign background. Smaller religious groups include Buddhism (0.2%), Judaism (0.1%), Hinduism (0.1%) and others (0.4%). About 36–37% of the country's population are not affiliated with any church or religion.
Of approximately 100 million native speakers of German in the world, million consider themselves Germans.[ citation needed ] There are an additional 80 million people of German ancestry mainly in the United States, Brazil (mainly in the South Region of the country), Argentina, Canada, South Africa, the post-Soviet states (mainly in Russia and Kazakhstan), and France, each accounting for at least 1 million. Thus, the total number of Germans lies somewhere between 100 and more than 150 million, depending on the criteria applied (native speakers, single-ancestry ethnic Germans, partial German ancestry, etc.).roughly 80
The South Region of Brazil is one of the five regions of Brazil. It includes the states of Paraná, Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul and covers 576,409.6 square kilometres (222,553.0 sq mi), being the smallest portion of the country, occupying only about 6.76% of the territory of Brazil. Its whole area is smaller than that of the state of Minas Gerais, in Southeast Brazil, for example. It is a great tourist, economic and cultural pole. It borders Uruguay, Argentina, and Paraguay as well as the Centre-West Region, the Southeast Region and the Atlantic Ocean. The region is considered the safest in Brazil to visit, having a lower crime rate than other regions in the country.
German Argentines are Argentine citizens of German ancestry. They are descendants of Germans who immigrated to Argentina from Germany and elsewhere in Europe. Some German Argentines originally settled in Brazil, then later immigrated to Argentina. Germany as a political entity was founded only in 1871, but immigrants from earlier dates are also considered German Argentines due to their shared ethnic heritage, language and culture. German Argentines today make up the fourth-largest ethnic group in Argentina, with over two million Volga Germans alone.
Today, people from countries with German-speaking majorities (such as Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and other historically-tied countries like Luxembourg) most often subscribe to their own national identities and may or may not also self-identify as ethnically German.
Austria, officially the Republic of Austria, is a landlocked country in Central Europe comprising 9 federated states. Its capital, largest city and one of nine states is Vienna. Austria has an area of 83,879 km2 (32,386 sq mi), a population of nearly 9 million people and a nominal GDP of $477 billion. It is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north, Hungary and Slovakia to the east, Slovenia and Italy to the south, and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. The terrain is highly mountainous, lying within the Alps; only 32% of the country is below 500 m (1,640 ft), and its highest point is 3,798 m (12,461 ft). The majority of the population speaks local Bavarian dialects as their native language, and German in its standard form is the country's official language. Other regional languages are Hungarian, Burgenland Croatian, and Slovene.
Switzerland, officially the Swiss Confederation, is a landlocked sovereign state situated in the confluence of western, central, and southern Europe. It is a federal republic composed of 26 cantons, with federal authorities seated in Bern. Switzerland is a landlocked country bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north, and Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. It is geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura, spanning a total area of 41,285 km2 (15,940 sq mi). While the Alps occupy the greater part of the territory, the Swiss population of approximately 8.5 million is concentrated mostly on the plateau, where the largest cities are located, among them the two global cities and economic centres of Zürich and Geneva.
Liechtenstein, officially the Principality of Liechtenstein, is a doubly landlocked German-speaking microstate in Alpine Central Europe. The principality is a constitutional monarchy headed by the Prince of Liechtenstein.
The German term Deutsche originates from the Old High German word diutisc (from diot "people"), referring to the Germanic "language of the people". It is not clear how commonly, if at all, the word was used as an ethnonym in Old High German.
Old High German is the earliest stage of the German language, conventionally covering the period from around 750 to 1050. There is no standardised or supra-regional form of German at this period, and Old High German is an umbrella term for the group of continental West Germanic dialects which underwent the set of consonantal changes called the Second Sound Shift.
The Germanic languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family spoken natively by a population of about 515 million people mainly in Europe, North America, Oceania, and Southern Africa.
Used as a noun, ein diutscher in the sense of "a German" emerges in Middle High German, attested from the second half of the 12th century.
Middle High German is the term for the form of German spoken in the High Middle Ages. It is conventionally dated between 1050 and 1350, developing from Old High German and into Early New High German. High German is defined as those varieties of German which were affected by the Second Sound Shift; the Middle Low German and Middle Dutch languages spoken to the North and North West, which did not participate in this sound change, are not part of MHG.
The Old French term alemans is taken from the name of the Alamanni. It was loaned into Middle English as almains in the early 14th century. The word Dutch is attested in English from the 14th century, denoting continental West Germanic ("Dutch" and "German") dialects and their speakers.
While in most Romance languages the Germans have been named from the Alamanni (in what became Swabia) (some, like standard Italian tedeschi, retain an older borrowing of the endonym, while the Romanian 'germani' stems from the historical correlation with the ancient region of Germania), the Old Norse, Finnish, and Estonian names for the Germans were taken from that of the Saxons. In Slavic languages, the Germans were given the name of němьci (singular němьcь), originally with a meaning "foreigner, one who does not speak [Slavic]".
The English term Germans is only attested from the mid-16th century, based on the classical Latin term Germani used by Julius Caesar and later Tacitus. It gradually replaced Dutch and Almains, the latter becoming mostly obsolete by the early 18th century.
The Germans are a Germanic people, who as an ethnicity emerged during the Middle Ages. Originally part of the Holy Roman Empire, around 300 independent German states emerged during its decline after the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 ending the Thirty Years War. These states eventually formed into modern Germany in the 19th century.
The concept of a German ethnicity is linked to Germanic tribes of antiquity in central Europe. [ citation needed ] was significantly increasing and they began expanding into eastern Europe and southward into Celtic territory. During antiquity these Germanic tribes remained separate from each other and did not have writing systems at that time.The early Germans originated on the North German Plain as well as southern Scandinavia. By the 2nd century BC, the number of Germans
In the European Iron Age the area that is now Germany was divided into the (Celtic) La Tène horizon in Southern Germany and the (Germanic) Jastorf culture in Northern Germany. By 55 BC, the Germans[ citation needed ] had reached the Danube river and had either assimilated or otherwise driven out the Celts who had lived there, and had spread west into what is now Belgium and France.
Conflict between the Germanic tribes and the forces of Rome under Julius Caesar forced major Germanic tribes to retreat to the east bank of the Rhine. [ citation needed ], but the catastrophic Roman defeat at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest resulted in the Roman Empire abandoning its plans to completely conquer Germania. Germanic peoples in Roman territory were culturally Romanized, and although much of Germania remained free of direct Roman rule, Rome deeply influenced the development of German society, especially the adoption of Christianity by the Germans who obtained it from the Romans. In Roman-held territories with Germanic populations, the Germanic and Roman peoples intermarried, and Roman, Germanic, and Christian traditions intermingled. The adoption of Christianity would later become a major influence in the development of a common German identity.Roman emperor Augustus in 12 BC ordered the conquest of the Germans
The first major public figure to speak of a German[ citation needed ] people in general, was the Roman figure Tacitus in his work Germania around 100 AD. However an actual united German identity and ethnicity did not exist then, and it would take centuries of development of German culture until the concept of a German ethnicity began to become a popular identity.
The Germanic peoples during the Migrations Period came into contact with other peoples; in the case of the populations settling in the territory of modern Germany, they encountered Celts to the south, and Balts and Slavs towards the east. The Limes Germanicus was breached in AD 260. Migrating Germanic tribes commingled with the local Gallo-Roman populations in what is now Swabia and Bavaria. The arrival of the Huns in Europe resulted in Hun conquest of large parts of Eastern Europe, the Huns initially were allies of the Roman Empire who fought against Germanic tribes, but later the Huns cooperated with the Germanic tribe of the Ostrogoths, and large numbers of Germans lived within the lands of the Hunnic Empire of Attila.Attila had both Hunnic and Germanic families and prominent Germanic chiefs amongst his close entourage in Europe. The Huns living in Germanic territories in Eastern Europe adopted an East Germanic language as their lingua franca . A major part of Attila's army were Germans, during the Huns' campaign against the Roman Empire. After Attila's unexpected death the Hunnic Empire collapsed with the Huns disappearing as a people in Europe–who either escaped into Asia or otherwise blended in amongst Europeans.
The migration-period peoples who later coalesced into a "German" ethnicity were the Germanic tribes of the Saxons, Franci, Thuringii, Alamanni and Bavarii. These five tribes, sometimes with inclusion of the Frisians, are considered as the major groups to take part in the formation of the Germans.[ citation needed ] By the 9th century, the large tribes which lived on the territory of modern Germany had been united under the rule of the Frankish king Charlemagne, known in German as Karl der Große. Much of what is now Eastern Germany became Slavonic-speaking (Sorbs and Veleti), after these areas were vacated by Germanic tribes (Vandals, Lombards, Burgundians and Suebi amongst others) which had migrated into the former areas of the Roman Empire.
A German ethnicity emerged in the course of the Middle Ages, ultimately as a result of the formation of the Kingdom of Germany within East Francia and later the Holy Roman Empire, beginning in the 9th century. The process was gradual and lacked any clear definition, and the use of exonyms designating "the Germans" develops only during the High Middle Ages. The title of rex teutonicum "King of the Germans" is first used in the late 11th century, by the chancery of Pope Gregory VII, to describe the future Holy Roman Emperor of the German nation Henry IV.Natively, the term diutscher (German) was used for the people of Germany beginning in the 12th century.
After Christianization, the Roman Catholic Church and local rulers led German expansion and settlement in areas inhabited by Slavs and Balts, known as Ostsiedlung. During the wars waged in the Baltic by the Catholic German Teutonic Knights; the lands inhabited by the ethnic group of the Old Prussians (the current reference to the people known then simply as the "Prussians"), were conquered by the Germans. The Old Prussians were an ethnic group related to the Latvian and Lithuanian Baltic peoples.The former German state of Prussia took its name from the Baltic Prussians, although it was led by Germans who had assimilated the Old Prussians; the old Prussian language was extinct by the 17th or early 18th century. The Slavic people of the Teutonic-controlled Baltic were assimilated into German culture and eventually there were many intermarriages of Slavic and German families, including into Prussia's aristocracy known as the Junkers. Prussian military strategist Karl von Clausewitz is a famous German whose surname is of Slavic origin. Massive German settlement led to the assimilation of Baltic (Old Prussians) and Slavic (Wends) populations, who were exhausted by previous warfare.
At the same time, naval innovations led to a German domination of trade in the Baltic Sea and parts of Eastern Europe through the Hanseatic League. Along the trade routes, Hanseatic trade stations became centers of the German culture. German town law (Stadtrecht) was promoted by the presence of large, relatively wealthy German populations, their influence and political power. Thus people who would be considered "Germans", with a common culture, language, and worldview different from that of the surrounding rural peoples, colonized trading towns as far north of present-day Germany as Bergen (in Norway), Stockholm (in Sweden), and Vyborg (now in Russia). The Hanseatic League was not exclusively German in any ethnic sense: many towns who joined the league were outside the Holy Roman Empire and a number of them may only loosely be characterized as German. The Empire itself was not entirely German either. It had a multi-ethnic and multi-lingual structure, some of the smaller ethnicities and languages used at different times were Dutch, Italian, French, Czech and Polish.
By the Middle Ages, large numbers of Jews lived in the Holy Roman Empire and had assimilated into German culture, including many Jews who had previously assimilated into French culture and had spoken a mixed Judeo-French language.Upon assimilating into German culture, the Jewish German peoples incorporated major parts of the German language and elements of other European languages into a mixed language known as Yiddish. However tolerance and assimilation of Jews in German society suddenly ended during the Crusades with many Jews being forcefully expelled from Germany and Western Yiddish disappeared as a language in Germany over the centuries, with German Jewish people fully adopting the German language.
From the late 15th century, the Holy Roman Empire came to be known as the Holy Roman Empire of the German nation. The Thirty Years' War, a series of conflicts fought mainly in the territory of modern Germany, weakened the coherence of the Holy Roman Empire, leading to the emergence of different, smaller German states known as Kleinstaaterei in 18th-century Germany.
The Napoleonic Wars were the cause of the final dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire, and ultimately the cause for the quest for a German nation state in 19th-century German nationalism. After the Congress of Vienna, Austria and Prussia emerged as two competitors. Austria, trying to remain the dominant power in Central Europe, led the way in the terms of the Congress of Vienna. The Congress of Vienna was essentially conservative, assuring that little would change in Europe and preventing Germany from uniting.These terms came to a sudden halt following the Revolutions of 1848 and the Crimean War in 1856, paving the way for German unification in the 1860s. By the 1820s, large numbers of Jewish German women had intermarried with Christian German men and had converted to Christianity. Jewish German Eduard Lasker was a prominent German nationalist figure who promoted the unification of Germany in the mid-19th century.
German nationalism became the sole focus of the German Question which was the question of how Germany was going to be best unified into a nation-state. The idea of unifying all German-speakers into one state was known as the Großdeutsche Lösung ("Greater German solution") which was propagated mostly by the Austrian Empire and the German Austrians. The other option, the Kleindeutsche Lösung ("Lesser German solution") only advocated unifying the northern German states without Austria and the German Austrians was supported predominantly in the Kingdom of Prussia.The idea of including the Austrian Empire into a German nation-state was a problem because it included many non-German ethnic groups, as well as many of the areas it ruled had never been part of Germany and did not want to become part of a German nation-state. In 1866, the feud between Austria and Prussia finally came to a head. In the final battle of the German war ( Battle of Königgrätz ) the Prussians successfully defeated the Austrians and succeeded in creating the North German Confederation.
In 1870, after France attacked Prussia, Prussia and its new allies in Southern Germany (among them Bavaria) were victorious in the Franco-Prussian War. It created the German Empire in 1871 as a German nation-state, effectively excluding the multi-ethnic Austrian Habsburg monarchy and Liechtenstein. Integrating the Austrian Germans nevertheless remained a strong desire for many people of Germany and Austria, especially among the liberals, the social democrats and also the Catholics who were a minority within the Protestant Germany.
During the 19th century in the German territories, rapid population growth due to lower death rates, combined with poverty, spurred millions of Germans to emigrate, chiefly to the United States. Today, roughly 17% of the United States' population (23% of the white population) is of mainly German ancestry.
The dissolution of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire after World War I led to a strong desire of the population of the new Republic of German Austria to be integrated into Germany or Switzerland.This was, however, prevented by the Treaty of Saint Germain and the Treaty of Versailles. In 1930, three years before the Nazi era, there were roughly 94 million people all over the world claiming German ancestry, or about 4,5% of the world population at the time.
During the Third Reich, the Nazis, led by Austrian-born Adolf Hitler, attempted to unite all the people they claimed were "Germans" ( Volksdeutsche ) under the slogan Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer ("One People, One Empire, One Leader"). This policy began in 1938 with Hitler's foreign policy Heim ins Reich ("back home to the Reich") which aimed to persuade all Germans living outside of the Reich to return "home" either as individuals or regions to a Greater Germany.During the war, Heinrich Himmler who was issued with the policy of "strengthening of ethnic Germandom" created a Volksliste ("German People's List") which was used to classify all those living in the German occupied territories into different categories according to criteria by Himmler. The policy of uniting all Germans included ethnic Germans in eastern Europe, many of whom had emigrated more than one hundred fifty years before and developed separate cultures in their new lands. This idea was initially welcomed by many ethnic Germans in Sudetenland, Austria, Poland, Danzig and western Lithuania, particularly the Germans from Klaipeda (Memel). The Swiss resisted the idea. They had viewed themselves as a distinctly separate nation since the Peace of Westphalia of 1648.
After World War II, eastern European countries such as the Soviet Union, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia expelled the Germans from their territories. Many of those had inhabited these lands for centuries, developing a unique culture. Germans were also forced to leave the former eastern territories of Germany, which were annexed by Poland (Silesia, Pomerania, parts of Brandenburg and southern part of East Prussia) and the Soviet Union (northern part of East Prussia). Between 12 and 16,5 million ethnic Germans and German citizens were expelled westwards to allied-occupied Germany.
After World War II, Austrians increasingly saw themselves as a separate nation from the German nation. In 1966, 47% people in Austria viewed themselves as Austrians. In 1990, the number increased to 79%.Recent polls show that no more than 6% of the German-speaking Austrians consider themselves as "Germans". An Austrian identity was vastly emphasized along with the " first-victim of Nazism theory ." Today over 80 percent of the Austrians see themselves as an independent nation.
Before the collapse of communism and the reunification of Germany in 1990, Germans constituted the largest divided nation in Europe by far. million ethnic Germans and their dependents, mostly from Poland and Romania, arrived in Germany under special provisions of right of return. With the collapse of the Iron Curtain since 1987, 3 million "Aussiedler" – ethnic Germans, mainly from Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union – took advantage of Germany's law of return to leave the "land of their birth" for Germany.Between 1950 and 1987, about 1.4
Approximately 2 million, just from the territories of the former Soviet Union, have resettled in Germany since the late 1980s.On the other hand, significant numbers of ethnic Germans have moved from Germany to other European countries, especially Switzerland, the Netherlands, Britain, Spain and Portugal.
In its State of World Population 2006 report, the United Nations Population Fund lists Germany with hosting the third-highest percentage of the main international migrants worldwide, about 5% or 10 million of all 191 million migrants.
The native language of Germans is German, a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch, and sharing many similarities with the North Germanic and Scandinavian languages. Spoken by approximately 100 million native speakers,German is one of the world's major languages and the most widely spoken first language in the European Union. German has been replaced by English as the dominant language of science-related Nobel Prize laureates during the second half of the 20th century. It was a lingua franca in the Holy Roman Empire.
Global distribution of native speakers of the German language:
|Country||German-speaking population (outside German-speaking countries)|
|450,000 – 620,000|
|75,000 (German expatriate citizens)|
|30,000 (German expatriate citizens)|
People of German origin are found in various places around the globe. United States is home to approximately 50 million German Americans or one third of the German diaspora, making it the largest centre of German-descended people outside Germany. Brazil is the second largest with 5 million people claiming German ancestry. Other significant centres are Canada, Argentina, South Africa and France each accounting for at least 1 million. While the exact number of German-descended people is difficult to calculate, the available data makes it safe to claim the number is exceeding 100 million people.
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German literature can be traced back to the Middle Ages, with the most notable authors of the period being Walther von der Vogelweide and Wolfram von Eschenbach. The Nibelungenlied , whose author remains unknown, is also an important work of the epoch, as is the Thidrekssaga . The fairy tales collections collected and published by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm in the 19th century became famous throughout the world.
Theologian Luther, who translated the Bible into German, is widely credited for having set the basis for the modern "High German" language. Among the most admired German poets and authors are Lessing, Goethe, Schiller, Kleist, Hoffmann, Brecht, Heine and Schmidt. Nine Germans have won the Nobel Prize in literature: Theodor Mommsen, Paul von Heyse, Gerhart Hauptmann, Thomas Mann, Nelly Sachs, Hermann Hesse, Heinrich Böll, Günter Grass, and Herta Müller.
Germany's influence on philosophy is historically significant and many notable German philosophers have helped shape Western philosophy since the Middle Ages. The rise of the modern natural sciences and the related decline of religion raised a series of questions, which recur throughout German philosophy, concerning the relationships between knowledge and faith, reason and emotion, and scientific, ethical, and artistic ways of seeing the world.
German philosophers have helped shape western philosophy from as early as the Middle Ages (Albertus Magnus). Later, Leibniz (17th century) and most importantly Kant played central roles in the history of philosophy. Kantianism inspired the work of Schopenhauer and Nietzsche as well as German idealism defended by Fichte and Hegel. Engels helped develop communist theory in the second half of the 19th century while Heidegger and Gadamer pursued the tradition of German philosophy in the 20th century. A number of German intellectuals were also influential in sociology, most notably Adorno, Habermas, Horkheimer, Luhmann, Simmel, Tönnies, and Weber. The University of Berlin founded in 1810 by linguist and philosopher Wilhelm von Humboldt served as an influential model for a number of modern western universities.
In the 21st century, Germany has been an important country for the development of contemporary analytic philosophy in continental Europe, along with France, Austria, Switzerland and the Scandinavian countries.
Germany has been the home of many famous inventors and engineers, such as Johannes Gutenberg, who is credited with the invention of movable type printing in Europe; Hans Geiger, the creator of the Geiger counter; and Konrad Zuse, who built the first electronic computer.German inventors, engineers and industrialists such as Zeppelin, Daimler, Diesel, Otto, Wankel, Von Braun and Benz helped shape modern automotive and air transportation technology including the beginnings of space travel.
The work of David Hilbert, Max Planck and Albert Einstein was crucial to the foundation of modern physics, which Werner Heisenberg and Erwin Schrödinger developed further.They were preceded by such key physicists as Hermann von Helmholtz, Joseph von Fraunhofer, and Gabriel Daniel Fahrenheit, among others. Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen discovered X-rays, an accomplishment that made him the first winner of the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1901. The Walhalla temple for "laudable and distinguished Germans", features a number of scientists, and is located east of Regensburg, in Bavaria.
In the field of music, Germany claims some of the most renowned classical composers of the world including Bach, Mozart and Beethoven, who marked the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western classical music. Other composers of the Austro-German tradition who achieved international fame include Brahms, Wagner, Haydn, Schubert, Händel, Schumann, Liszt, Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Johann Strauss II, Bruckner, Mahler, Telemann, Richard Strauss, Schoenberg, Orff, and most recently, Henze, Lachenmann, and Stockhausen.
As of 2008 [update] , Germany is the fourth largest music market in the world and has exerted a strong influence on Dance and Rock music, and pioneered trance music. Artists such as Herbert Grönemeyer, Scorpions, Rammstein, Nena, Dieter Bohlen, Tokio Hotel and Modern Talking have enjoyed international fame. German musicians and, particularly, the pioneering bands Tangerine Dream and Kraftwerk have also contributed to the development of electronic music. Germany hosts many large rock music festivals annually. The Rock am Ring festival is the largest music festival in Germany, and among the largest in the world. German artists also make up a large percentage of Industrial music acts, which is called Neue Deutsche Härte. Germany hosts some of the largest Goth scenes and festivals in the entire world, with events like Wave-Gothic-Treffen and M'era Luna Festival easily attracting up to 30,000 people. Amongst Germany's famous artists there are various Dutch entertainers, such as Johannes Heesters.
German cinema dates back to the very early years of the medium with the work of Max Skladanowsky. It was particularly influential during the years of the Weimar Republic with German expressionists such as Robert Wiene and Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau. The Nazi era produced mostly propaganda films although the work of Leni Riefenstahl still introduced new aesthetics in film. From the 1960s, New German Cinema directors such as Volker Schlöndorff, Werner Herzog, Wim Wenders, Rainer Werner Fassbinder placed West-German cinema back onto the international stage with their often provocative films, while the DEFA film studio controlled film production in the GDR.
More recently, films such as Das Boot (1981), The Never Ending Story (1984) Run Lola Run (1998), Das Experiment (2001), Good Bye Lenin! (2003), Gegen die Wand (Head-on) (2004) and Der Untergang (Downfall) (2004) have enjoyed international success. In 2002 the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film went to Caroline Link's Nowhere in Africa, in 2007 to Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's The Lives of Others. The Berlin International Film Festival, held yearly since 1951, is one of the world's foremost film and cinema festivals.
Architectural contributions from Germany include the Carolingian and Ottonian styles, important precursors of Romanesque. The region then produced significant works in styles such as the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.
The nation was particularly important in the early modern movement through the Deutscher Werkbund and the Bauhaus movement identified with Walter Gropius. The Nazis closed these movements and favoured a type of neo-classicism. Since World War II, further important modern and post-modern structures have been built, particularly since the reunification of Berlin.
Roman Catholicism was the sole established religion in the Holy Roman Empire until the Reformation changed this drastically. In 1517, Martin Luther challenged the Catholic Church as he saw it as a corruption of Christian faith. Through this, he altered the course of European and world history and established Protestantism.The Thirty Years' War (1618–1648) was one of the most destructive conflicts in European history. The war was fought primarily in what is now Germany, and at various points involved most of the countries of Europe. The war was fought largely as a religious conflict between Protestants and Catholics in the Holy Roman Empire.
According to the latest nationwide census, Roman Catholics constituted 29.5% of the total population of Germany, followed by the Evangelical Protestants at 27.9%. Other Christian denominations, other religions, atheists or not specified constituted 42.6% of the population at the time. Among "others" are Protestants not included in Evangelical Church of Germany, and other Christians such as the Restorationist New Apostolic Church. Protestantism was more common among the citizens of Germany.The North and East Germany is predominantly Protestant, the South and West rather Catholic. Nowadays there is a non-religious majority in Hamburg and the East German states.
Historically, Germany had a substantial Jewish minority. Only a few thousand people of Jewish origin remained in Germany after the Holocaust, but the German Jewish community now has approximately 100,000 members, many from the former Soviet Union. Germany also has a substantial Muslim minority, most of whom are immigrants from Turkey.
German theologians include Luther, Melanchthon, Schleiermacher, Feuerbach, and Rudolf Otto. Also Germany brought up many mystics including Meister Eckhart, Rudolf Steiner, Jakob Boehme, and some popes (e.g. Benedict XVI).
Sport forms an integral part of German life, as demonstrated by the fact that 27 million Germans are members of a sports club and an additional twelve million pursue such an activity individually. Football is by far the most popular sport, and the German Football Federation (Deutscher Fußballbund) with more than 6.3 million members is the largest athletic organisation in the country. It also attracts the greatest audience, with hundreds of thousands of spectators attending Bundesliga matches and millions more watching on television.
Other popular sports include handball, volleyball, basketball, ice hockey, and Winter sports.Historically, German sportsmen have been successful contenders in the Olympic Games, ranking third in an all-time Olympic Games medal count, combining East and West German medals. In the 2012 Summer Olympics, Germany finished sixth overall, whereas in the 2010 Winter Olympics Germany finished second.
There are also many Germans in the American NBA. In 2011, Dirk Nowitzki won his first NBA Championship with the Dallas Mavericks by upsetting the Miami Heat. He was also named that year's NBA Finals Most Valuable Player.
Germany is a modern, advanced society, shaped by a plurality of lifestyles and regional identities.The country has established a high level of gender equality, promotes disability rights, and is legally and socially tolerant towards homosexuals. Gays and lesbians can legally adopt their partner's biological children, and civil unions have been permitted since 2001. Former Foreign minister Guido Westerwelle and the former mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit, are openly gay.
During the last decade of the 20th century, Germany changed its attitude towards immigrants. Until the mid-1990s the opinion was widespread that Germany is not a country of immigration, even though about 20% of the population were of non-German origin. Today the government and a majority of the German society are acknowledging that immigrants from diverse ethnocultural backgrounds are part of the German society and that controlled immigration should be initiated based on qualification standards.
Since the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the internal and external evaluation of Germany's national image has changed.In the annual Nation Brands Index global survey, Germany became significantly and repeatedly more highly ranked after the tournament. People in 20 different states assessed the country's reputation in terms of culture, politics, exports, its people and its attractiveness to tourists, immigrants and investments. Germany has been named the world's second most valued nation among 50 countries in 2010. Another global opinion poll, for the BBC, revealed that Germany is recognised for the most positive influence in the world in 2010. A majority of 59% have a positive view of the country, while 14% have a negative view.
With an expenditure of €67 billion on international travel in 2008, Germans spent more money on travel than any other country. The most visited destinations were Spain, Italy and Austria.
The event of the Protestant Reformation and the politics that ensued has been cited as the origins of German identity that arose in response to the spread of a common German language and literature.Early German national culture was developed through literary and religious figures including Martin Luther, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Friedrich Schiller. The concept of a German nation was developed by German philosopher Johann Gottfried Herder. The popularity of German identity arose in the aftermath of the French Revolution.
Persons who speak German as their first language, look German and whose families have lived in Germany for generations are considered "most German", followed by categories of diminishing Germanness such as Aussiedler (people of German ancestry whose families have lived in Eastern Europe but who have returned to Germany), Restdeutsche (people living in lands that have historically belonged to Germany but which is currently outside of Germany), Auswanderer (people whose families have emigrated from Germany and who still speak German), German speakers in German-speaking nations such as Austrians, and finally people of German emigrant background who no longer speak German.
Pan-Germanism's origins began in the early 19th century following the Napoleonic Wars. The wars launched a new movement that was born in France itself during the French Revolution. Nationalism during the 19th century threatened the old aristocratic regimes. Many ethnic groups of Central and Eastern Europe had been divided for centuries, ruled over by the old Monarchies of the Romanovs and the Habsburgs. Germans, for the most part, had been a loose and disunited people since the Reformation when the Holy Roman Empire was shattered into a patchwork of states. The new German nationalists, mostly young reformers such as Johann Tillmann of East Prussia, sought to unite all the German-speaking and ethnic-German (Volksdeutsche) people.
By the 1860s the Kingdom of Prussia and the Austrian Empire were the two most powerful nations dominated by German-speaking elites. Both sought to expand their influence and territory. The Austrian Empire – like the Holy Roman Empire – was a multi-ethnic state, but German-speaking people there did not have an absolute numerical majority; the creation of the Austro-Hungarian Empire was one result of the growing nationalism of other ethnicities especially the Hungarians in Austrian territory. Prussia under Otto von Bismarck would eventually ride on the coat-tails of nationalism to unite all of modern-day Germany. Following several wars, most notably the German war in 1866 between the two most powerful German states, Austria and Prussia, with the latter being victorious, the German Empire ("Second Reich") was created in 1871 as "Little Germany" without Austria following the proclamation of Wilhelm I as head of a union of German-speaking states, while disregarding millions of its non-German subjects who desired self-determination from German rule.
The creation of the multi-ethnic Austria-Hungary empire created strong ethnic conflict between the different ethnicities of the empire. German nationalism in Austria grew among all social circles of the empire, many wanted to be unified with the German Reich to form a Greater Germany and wanted policies to be carried out to enforce their German ethnic identity rejecting any Austrian pan-ethnic identity.Many German Austrians felt annoyed that they were excluded from the German Empire since it included various non-German ethnic groups. Prominent Austrian pan-Germans such as Georg Ritter von Schönerer created pan-German movements which demanded the annexation of all ethnic German territories. Members of such movements often wore blue cornflowers, known to be the favourite flower of German Emperor William I, in their buttonholes, along with cockades in the German national colours (black, red, and yellow). Both symbols were temporarily banned in Austrian schools. Populists such as the Viennese major Karl Lueger used anti-semitism and pan-Germanism for their own political purposes. Despite Bismarck's victory over Austria in 1866 which ultimately excluded Austria and the German Austrians from the Reich, many Austrian pan-Germans idolized him.
There was also a rejection of Roman Catholicism with the Away from Rome! movement calling for German speakers to identify with Lutheran or Old Catholic churches.
Following the defeat in World War I, influence of German-speaking elites over Central and Eastern Europe was greatly limited. At the Treaty of Versailles Germany was substantially reduced in size. Austria-Hungary was split up. The former German-speaking areas of Austria-Hungary was reduced to a rump state called the "Republic of German-Austria" (German: Deutschösterreich). On November 12, the National Assembly declared the rump state a republic and Social Democrat Karl Renner as provisional chancellor. On the same day, it drafted a provisional constitution which stated that "German-Austria is a democratic republic" (Article 1) and "German-Austria is an integral part of the German reich" (Article 2) with the hope of joining Germany.The name "German-Austria" and union with Germany were forbidden by the Treaty of Saint-Germain and the Treaty of Versailles. German-Austria lost the territories of the Sudetenland and German Bohemia to Czechoslovakia, South Tyrol to Italy, and southern Carinthia and Styria to Yugoslavia and the rump state was renamed "Republic of Austria". With these changes, the era of the First Austrian Republic began. These events are sometimes considered to be a pre- Anschluss attempt.
During the 1920s, the constitutions of both the First Austrian Republic and the Weimar Republic included the goal of union between the two countries which was supported by all different political parties. In the early 1930s, before the Nazis seized power, popularity for union between Austria and Germany remained strong and the Austrian government looked at the possibility of a customs union with Germany in 1931 but this was stopped by French opposition.In 1933, after Austrian-born Hitler came to power, support for an Anschluss grew. The Austrofascism era of Dollfuss/Schuschnigg between 1934-1938 accepted that Austrians were Germans and that Austria was a "German state" but was strongly opposed to Hitler's desire to annex Austria to the Third Reich and wished for Austria to remain independent.
The Heim ins Reich initiative (German: literally Home into the Reich, meaning Back to Reich, see Reich) was a policy pursued by Nazi Germany which attempted to convince people of German descent living outside of Germany (such as Sudetenland) that they should strive to bring these regions "home" into a greater Germany. This policy began in 1938 on 12 March when Hitler annexed Austria to the Third Reich.
Volga Germans living in the Soviet Union were interned in gulags or forcibly relocated during the Second World War.
World War II brought about the decline of Pan-Germanism, much as World War I had led to the demise of Pan-Slavism. The Germans in Central and Eastern Europe fledand were expelled , parts of Germany itself were devastated, and the country was divided, firstly into Russian, French, American, and British zones and then into West Germany and East Germany.
Germany suffered even larger territorial losses than it did in the First World War, with huge portions of eastern Germany directly annexed by the Soviet Unionand Poland. The scale of the Germans' defeat was unprecedented. Nationalism and Pan-Germanism became almost taboo because they had been used so destructively by the Nazis. Indeed, the word "Volksdeutscher" in reference to ethnic Germans naturalized during WWII later developed into a mild epithet.
From the 1960s, Germany also saw increasing immigration, especially from Turkey, under an official programme aimed at encouraging "Gastarbeiter" or guestworkers to the country to provide labour during the post-war economic boom years. Although it had been expected that such workers would return home, many settled in Germany, with their descendants becoming German citizens.
However, German reunification in 1990 revived the old debates. The fear of nationalistic misuse of Pan-Germanism nevertheless remains strong. But the overwhelming majority of Germans today are not chauvinistic in nationalism, but in 2006 and again in 2010, the German National Football Team won third place in the 2006 and 2010 FIFA World Cups, ignited a positive scene of German pride, enhanced by success in sport.
For decades after the Second World War, any national symbol or expression was a taboo.However, the Germans are becoming increasingly patriotic. During a study in 2009, in which some 2,000 German citizens age 14 and upwards filled out a questionnaire, nearly 60% of those surveyed agreed with the sentiment "I'm proud to be German." And 78%, if free to choose their nation, would opt for German nationality with "near or absolute certainty". Another study in 2009, carried out by the Identity Foundation in Düsseldorf, showed that 73% of the Germans were proud of their country, twice more than 8 years earlier. According to Eugen Buss, a sociology professor at the University of Hohenheim, there's an ongoing normalisation and more and more Germans are becoming openly proud of their country.
In the midst of the European sovereign-debt crisis, Radek Sikorski, Poland's Foreign Minister, stated in November 2011, "I will probably be the first Polish foreign minister in history to say so, but here it is: I fear German power less than I am beginning to fear German inactivity. You have become Europe's indispensable nation."According to Jacob Heilbrunn, a senior editor at The National Interest, such a statement is unprecedented when taking into consideration Germany's history. "This was an extraordinary statement from a top official of a nation that was ravaged by Germany during World War II. And it reflects a profound shift taking place throughout Germany and Europe about Berlin's position at the center of the Continent." Heilbrunn believes that the adage, "what was good for Germany was bad for the European Union" has been supplanted by a new mentality—what is in the interest of Germany is also in the interest of its neighbors. The evolution in Germany's national identity stems from focusing less on its Nazi past and more on its Prussian history, which many Germans believe was betrayed—and not represented—by Nazism. The evolution is further precipitated by Germany's conspicuous position as Europe's strongest economy. Indeed, this German sphere of influence has been welcomed by the countries that border it, as demonstrated by Polish foreign minister Radek Sikorski's effusive praise for his country's western neighbor. This shift in thinking is boosted by a newer generation of Germans who see World War II as a distant memory.
The concept of Germany as a distinct region in central Europe can be traced to Roman commander Julius Caesar, who referred to the unconquered area east of the Rhine as Germania, thus distinguishing it from Gaul (France), which he had conquered. The victory of the Germanic tribes in the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest prevented annexation by the Roman Empire, although the Roman provinces of Germania Superior and Germania Inferior were established along the Rhine. Following the Fall of the Western Roman Empire, the Franks conquered the other West Germanic tribes. When the Frankish Empire was divided among Charles the Great's heirs in 843, the eastern part became East Francia. In 962, Otto I became the first Holy Roman Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, the medieval German state.
Pan-Germanism, also occasionally known as Pan-Germanicism, is a pan-nationalist political idea. Pan-Germanists originally sought to unify all the German and possibly also Germanic-speaking peoples in a single nation-state known as Großdeutschland.
Reich is a German word analogous in meaning to the English word "realm". The terms Kaiserreich and Königreich are used in German to refer to empires and kingdoms respectively. The Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary indicates that in English usage, the term "the Reich" refers to "Germany during the period of Nazi control from 1933 to 1945".
Slavs are an Indo-European ethno-linguistic group who speak the various Slavic languages of the larger Balto-Slavic linguistic group. They are native to Eurasia, stretching from Central, Eastern, and Southeastern Europe all the way north and eastwards to Northeast Europe, Northern Asia (Siberia), and Central Asia, as well as historically in Western Europe and Western Asia. From the early 6th century they spread to inhabit the majority of Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe. Today, there is a large Slavic diaspora throughout North America, particularly in the United States and Canada as a result of immigration.
Austrians are a Germanic nation and ethnic group, native to modern Austria and South Tyrol that share a common Austrian culture, Austrian descent and Austrian history. The English term Austrians was applied to the population of Habsburg Austria from the 17th or 18th century. Subsequently, during the 19th century, it referred to the citizens of the Empire of Austria (1804–1867), and from 1867 until 1918 to the citizens of Cisleithania. In the closest sense, the term Austria originally referred to the historical March of Austria, corresponding roughly to the Vienna Basin in what is today Lower Austria.
Deutsches Reich was the official name in the German language for the German nation state that existed from 1871 to 1945. The Reich became understood as deriving its authority and sovereignty entirely from a continuing unitary German 'national people'; with that authority and sovereignty being exercised at any one time over a unitary German 'state territory' with variable boundaries and extent. Although commonly translated as "German Empire", the word Reich here better translates as "realm", in that the term does not in itself have monarchical connotations. The word Kaiserreich is applied to denote an empire with an emperor; hence the German Empire of 1871–1918 is termed Deutsches Kaiserreich in standard works of reference. From 1943 to 1945, the official name of Germany became – but was not formally proclaimed – Großdeutsches Reich on account of the further German peoples and associated territories annexed into the state's administration during and before the Second World War.
Prussia was a historically prominent German state that originated in 1525 with a duchy centred on the region of Prussia on the southeast coast of the Baltic Sea. It was de facto dissolved by an emergency decree transferring powers of the Prussian government to German Chancellor Franz von Papen in 1932 and de jure by an Allied decree in 1947. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, successfully expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organised and effective army. Prussia, with its capital in Königsberg and from 1701 in Berlin, decisively shaped the history of Germany.
Germanisation is the spread of the German language, people and culture. It was a central plank of German conservative thinking in the 19th and 20th centuries, during a period when conservatism and Ethno-nationalism went hand-in-hand. In linguistics, Germanisation also occurs when a word from the German language is adopted into a foreign language.
German nationalism is the nationalist idea that Germans are a nation, promotes the unity of Germans and German-speakers into a nation state, and emphasizes and takes pride in the national identity of Germans. The earliest origins of German nationalism began with the birth of romantic nationalism during the Napoleonic Wars when Pan-Germanism started to rise. Advocacy of a German nation-state began to become an important political force in response to the invasion of German territories by France under Napoleon.
Because of Germany's long history as a non-united region of distinct tribes and states before January 1871, there are many widely varying names of Germany in different languages, perhaps more so than for any other European nation. For example, in the German language, the country is known as Deutschland, in Spanish as Alemania, in French as Allemagne, in Italian as Germania, in Polish as Niemcy, and in Finnish as Saksa.
French–German (Franco-German) enmity was the idea of unavoidably hostile relations and mutual revanchism between Germans and French people that arose in the 16th century and became popular with the Franco–Prussian War of 1870–1871. It was an important factor in the unification of Germany, and World War I, and was finally overcome after World War II, when under the influence of the Cold War cordial French–German relations became the key to European integration.
The presence of German-speaking populations in Central and Eastern Europe is rooted in centuries of history, with the settling in northeastern Europe of Germanic peoples predating even the founding of the Roman Empire. The presence of the independent German states in the region, and later the German Empire and also in other multi-ethnic countries, such as Austria-Hungary, Poland, Imperial Russia, etc., demonstrates the extent and duration of German-speaking settlements.
Relations between Austria and Germany are close, due to their shared history and language, with German being the official language and Germans being the largest ethnic group of both countries.
The European balance of power referred to international relations between European countries during the First World War, which evolved into the present states of Europe. The Nineteenth Century political concept emerged at the Peace of Paris in 1815. It is often known by the term European State System. Its basic tenet is that no single European power should be allowed to achieve hegemony over a substantial part of the continent and that this is best curtailed by having a small number of ever-changing alliances contend for power.
The German noun Volk translates to people, both uncountable in the sense of people as in a crowd, and countable in the sense of a people as in an ethnic group or nation.
"The German Question" was a debate in the 19th century, especially during the Revolutions of 1848, over the best way to achieve the unification of Germany. From 1815 to 1866, about 37 independent German-speaking states existed within the German Confederation. The Großdeutsche Lösung favored unifying all German-speaking peoples under one state, and was promoted by the Austrian Empire and its supporters. The Kleindeutsche Lösung sought only to unify the northern German states and did not include Austria; this proposal was favored by the Kingdom of Prussia.
The Greater Germanic Reich, fully styled the Greater Germanic Reich of the German Nation is the official state name of the political entity that Nazi Germany tried to establish in Europe during World War II. Hitler also mentions a future Germanic State of the German Nation in Mein Kampf. The territorial claims for the Greater Germanic Reich fluctuated over time. As early as the autumn of 1933, Hitler envisioned annexing such territories as Bohemia, Western Poland and Austria to Germany and creation of satellite or puppet states without economies or policies of their own.
Austrian nationalism is the nationalism that asserts that Austrians are a nation and promotes the cultural unity of Austrians. Austrian nationalism originally developed as a cultural nationalism that emphasized a Catholic religious identity. This in turn led to its opposition to unification with Protestant-majority Germany, something that was perceived as a potential threat to the Catholic core of Austrian national identity.
Argentina has an estimated 2017 population of 44.27 million ... about 8% are descended from German immigrants
Spanish: Hoy, el perfil de los alemanes residentes aquí es distinto y ya no tienen el peso numérico que alguna vez alcanzaron. En los años 40 y 50 eran en Chile el segundo mayor grupo de extranjeros, representando el 13% (13.000 alemanes). Según el último censo de 2002, en cambio, están en el octavo lugar: son sólo 5.500 personas, lo que equivale al 5% de los foráneos. Sin embargo, la colonia formada por familias de origen alemán es activa y numerosa. Según explica Karla Berndt, gerente de comunicaciones de la Cámara Chileno-Alemana de Comercio (Camchal), los descendientes suman 500.000. Concentrados en el sur y centro del país, donde encuentran un clima más afín, su red de instituciones es amplia. 'Hay clínicas, clubes, una Liga Chileno-Alemana, compañías de bomberos y un periódico semanal en alemán llamado Cóndor. Chile es el lugar en el que se concentra el mayor número de colegios alemanes, 24, lo que es mucho para un país tan chico de sólo 16 millones de habitantes', relata Berndt.
English: Today, the profile of the Germans living here is different and no longer have the numerical weight they once reached. In the 1940s and 1950s they were in Chile's second largest foreign group, accounting for 13% (13,000 Germans). According to the last census in 2002, however, they are in eighth place: they are only 5,500 people, equivalent to 3% of foreigners. However, the colony of families of German origin is active and numerous. According to Karla Berndt, communications manager for the German-Chilean Chamber of Commerce (Camchal), descendants totaled 500,000. Concentrated in the south and center of the country, where they find a more congenial climate, its network of institutions is wide. 'There are clinics, clubs, a Chilean-German League, fire companies and a German weekly newspaper called Condor. Chile is the place in which the largest number of German schools, 24 which is a lot for such a small country of only 16 million people', says Berndt.
Immigrés : 78 000 ; 1ère génération née en France : 129 000 ; 2ème génération née en France : 230 000 ; Total : 437 000
90 000 svenskar bor i Norge
Germans are a Germanic (or Teutonic) people that are indigenous to Central Europe
The Germanic [peoples] still include: Englishmen, Dutchmen, Germans, Danes, Swedes, Saxons. Therefore, [in the same way] as Poles, Russians, Czechs, Serbs, Croats, Bulgarians belong to the Slavic [peoples]...
Dutch quite often refers to German (because of the similarity in sound between Dutch and Deutsch) and sometimes even Scandinavians and other Germanic people.
Los cien mil miembros de esta comunidad anabaptista, establecida en Chihuahua desde 1922, se plantean emigrar a la república rusa de Tartaristán, que se ofrece a acogerlos
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