Regionalism, which is one of the basic features of German history, is clearly noticeable in cultural life. There is no self-written cultural metropolis but many cultural centers, which have been built up over the centuries. Nor does the federal government pursue a central cultural policy. The Ministry of Culture exists only at the state level.

German music, literature and philosophy have produced a number of significant works that have influenced cultural development in other countries as well. In the late 18th century, famous writers such as Johann Wolfgang Goethe and Friedrich Schiller made the city of Weimar a cultural center. German romanticism in the first half of the 19th century had its centers in Jena and Heidelberg, from which impulses emanated to the rest of Europe. Heinrich Heine was one of the great poets of the 19th century, and at the end of the century Rainer Maria Rilke, who had a great influence on modern poetry. At the beginning of the 20th century, Thomas Mann, who received the Nobel Prize in 1929 for the novel Buddenbrooks, and Herman Hesse became the big names in novel art. The author Erich Maria Remarque gave nothing new in On the Western Frontan unvarnished depiction of the reality of war. The playwright Bertold Brecht had great success with, among other things, the Twelve Shillings Opera. Other famous names are Heinrich Böll, Christa Wolf and Günter Grass. The Romanian-German author Herta Müller received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2009. In recent years, authors such as Judith Hermann, Daniel Kehlmann, Felicitas Hoppe and Juli Zeh have become popular in Sweden.

Adolf Hitler’s accession to power in 1933 led to a mass exodus of cultural figures from Germany. After the end of the war in 1945, a new generation of West German writers began to come to terms with their country’s past. Among the most famous are Heinrich Böll and Günter Grass, who have both received the Nobel Prize for their novels.

Germany has old musical traditions that have survived into our time, such as the Dresdner Staatskapelle from 1548 and Leipzig’s Thomas Choir dating from the 13th century. The classical music tradition is kept alive through annual music festivals, such as the Beethoven, Bach and Mozart Weeks and the Wagner Festival in Bayreuth. At the beginning of the 20th century, composers such as Arnold Schönberg, Alban Berg and Anton Webern renewed the classical musical tradition through the twelve-tone technique, but this was banned during the Nazi era. After the end of the war, West Germany regained its place as a musical center. In popular music, the singer Ute Lemper has become a world name.

After the end of World War II, the main German stages ended up in East Berlin, including the Deutsches Theater, Komische Oper, Volksbühne and Berliner Ensemble, where Bertolt Brecht was artistic director from 1949-1956. In West Berlin, Deutsche Oper and Schaubühne were established. When Berlin was reunited in 1989, the city thus received an unusual number of significant cultural facilities.

The GDR government (East Germany) invested large resources in culture but at the same time set narrow limits on cultural life. Poets, playwrights, painters and other artists were forced to take part in political propaganda. Several cultural workers chose to leave the GDR. Others wanted to stay and work for greater artistic freedom but were expelled, such as the lyricist Wolf Biermann.

Within German film, acclaimed works were created as early as the 1920s with expressionists such as Robert Wiene and FW Murnau and Fritz Lang, among others, with the dark vision of the future, Metropolis. Ernst Lubitsch was known as a director as early as 1922 when he moved to the United States. Leni Riefenstahl’s documentaries during the Nazi era were based on a technique and aesthetic that influenced later filmmakers. The film reached a new heyday in the 1970s with names such as Werner Herzog, Volker Schlöndorff, Wim Wenders, Margarethe von Trotta and Rainer Werner Fassbinder. Award-winning filmmakers in recent years include Florian Henckel von Donnersmark, Oscar-winning 2007 for the lives of others, and Fatih Akin, Golden Bear Awarded 2004 for Against the Wall.

Germany Immigration Statistics



New large rescue package

June 4th

Angela Merkel’s government presents a gigantic economic package of measures to boost the economy and increase the purchasing power of the Germans. The package includes more than EUR 130 billion, including tax cuts and contributions to families with children of EUR 300 per child. VAT will be reduced from 19 to 16 percent between July 1 and December 31, 2020. Even companies in sectors hit particularly hard by the crisis – such as the tourism and entertainment sector and the hotel and restaurant industry – will be able to receive special support. Germany is expected to move in in the deepest recession in the country of 70 years.

  • Countryaah: Overview of the capital city of Germany, including information about its population, economy, geography, history and map.


Germany raises more coronary restrictions

May 26

In many places, shops, schools and churches have reopened. There are still rules that people should not be too close to each other, but groups of no more than ten people in public places are now allowed. The German state leaders now have the responsibility to decide when the measures introduced to limit the spread of the coronavirus should cease in their areas. The disagreement over when the restrictions should be lifted and how great has been between different state governments and the federal government. So far, 8300 people have died in the corona virus suites, while about 180,000 people are reported to have been infected.


Corona pandemic “under control” in Germany

April 20

According to the German government, the country now has control over the spread of the corona virus. Some smaller businesses in different parts of the country have thus been reopened. Thereafter, more stores will open again gradually. The restrictions on residents being allowed to meet only two people at a time will remain, as will the rules on physical distance between people in public environments. People are also recommended to wear face mask. Now almost 140,000 people in the country are reported to have been infected by the virus. However, the high number is also due to the fact that more people have been tested for corona than in many other countries. About 4,300 people have died.

Minor refugees are accepted from Greece

April 7

According to Abbreviationfinder, Germany has promised to receive 50 unaccompanied children and teenagers from refugee camps in Greece. The initiative is part of a collaboration between the European Commission and Greek authorities, which is also supported by UNHCR and other migrant organizations. A dozen EU countries will receive a total of 1,600 unaccompanied minors to relieve Greece, whose refugee camps are overcrowded and conditions difficult.


Support packages for the economy

March 25th

The German Confederation Day approves the government’s plan of action to try to tackle the corona pandemic’s impact on the economy. The rescue package, which concerns both support for companies through increased loan opportunities and measures to support health care, comprises a total of just over one thousand billion euros. Among other things, an economic stabilization fund of EUR 400 billion will be formed. The Federal Council is expected to approve the package, which has broad political support.

Quarantine Merkel due to coronavirus

March 22

Chancellor Angela Merkel quarantines herself after meeting a doctor who later turns out to be infected by the coronavirus. Shortly before the announcement came about Merkel’s isolation, she announced that the German people must not meet in groups larger than two people at a time. So far, nearly 19,000 people in the country have been infected by the corona virus, while 55 Germans have died in covid-19.

Record-sized support package against virus repercussions

March 16

To keep companies under arms during the corona pandemic, the government announces that companies will be able to get generous loans. According to Finance Minister Olaf Scholz, there is no upper limit on the loans to the companies. Initially, € 550 billion will be set aside for government loans, a sum already greater than the German government’s support during the 2008 financial crisis.

Germany closes borders

March 16

The borders to Switzerland, Austria and France are closed. The Government has long wanted to maintain free movement in accordance with the Schengen Agreement and the borders to the Netherlands and Belgium remain open for the time being. People who work commutes will also be able to continue to get to their jobs in Germany and goods transport will also be able to pass. Schools are closed across the country and many states have also closed restaurants and entertainment venues. The purpose of the measures is to curb the spread of the coronavirus and covid-19, which so far has affected about 5,000 people.


Eight dead in assaults outside Frankfurt

February 20th

A man opens fire on people in two bars with smoking pipe in Hanau outside Frankfurt. The victims have a Kurdish background and the act has far-right motives, it turns out when the police find a letter and a video from the perpetrator found dead in his home.

Kramp-Karrenbauer resigns as CDU leader

February 10

CDU party leader Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer resigns and announces that she will not stand as Christian Democrats candidate for Chancellor of Parliament in the 2021. Her resignation comes after a political scandal in which the Christian Democrats, along with the right-wing Nationalist AFD, voted for a Liberal head of state, Thomas Kemmerich instead of the incumbent head of government (Prime Minister) Bodo Ramelow from the Left (Die Linke). The fact that the Christian Democrats cooperated with the extreme right led to strong criticism within, as well as outside the party. The scandal also led Kemmerich to opt out of the post and in early March, Ramelow was re-elected instead.


First cases of new coronavirus

January 28

Four Germans are reported to have been infected by a new coronavirus. A Chinese woman from Shanghai has visited a company in Bavaria and infected four employees there. The Chinese had recently been visited by their parents living in the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the corona virus first emerged and spread in late 2019.

Germany Culture and Traditions
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