Monday April 20th, 2015 – 1:30pm
Soper room (Julia Rogers 2nd floor)
When thinking of Germany, pop music might not be the first thing that comes to mind. In her lecture, music journalist Birgit Reuther explains how the history of the country delayed and influenced Germany’s pop culture. What music did the German post war era listen to? How did the artists in East and West Germany act differently? And what does the reunited country sound like?
Learn how it became more and more common to produce pop music in the German language and how the lyrics reflected the political and social situation of every decade. The lecture addresses whether or not pop these days affirms or criticizes the mainstream.
Birgit Reuther is an editor for the culture section of the daily newspaper Hambruger Abendblatt. Her specialties are in pop- and subculture.
Hello, ¡Hola!, and 大家好! My name is Amy and I’m an Environmental Studies major who speaks Chinese and Spanish (following a loose definition, at least). As others mention, living in Language House is a fantastic experience. From icebreakers to food events, all involved are very friendly and open. One might suppose that a disconnect exists between Language House residents and its directors, but this is far from the truth; Jeanne and Maite are half—if not more!—of the reason Language House is so great. I doubt there are many colleges where professors sing and cook with their students.
While I may not necessarily have gone to many events requiring me to speak only in Spanish, living here encourages me to converse with my peers in Spanish (and even Chinese) every so often. I’m definitely self-conscious about my current language abilities, so this smaller, more casual environment is more comfortable for me compared to a larger one with more fluent speakers (which still slightly intimidates me at the moment). Language House isn’t some separate enclave for fluent foreign language speakers; it’s an inviting environment for those interested in practicing languages and broadening their worldviews.
Living in Language House has also indirectly allowed me to experience a small taste of cultural (and linguistic) immersion. Considering Goucher students come from all over the country (and even outside of it), going home during holidays is not always feasible; I myself am from southern California. Over Thanksgiving break, a friend (another Language House resident!) was kind enough to take me in; consequently, I stayed at her house and was surrounded by—if not bombarded with—the Spanish language for five days. While I was too shy and embarrassed to speak any of the Spanish I knew (save the last day), it was very rewarding for me when I did understand portions of conversations.
I like to tell myself that I’ve contributed to the relaxed and non-judgmental atmosphere of Language House. On the flip side, living in such a dynamic environment also raises questions of diversity and the possible tensions arising from it. My friends and I who reside in Language House have definitely had some more serious discussions about this topic; while these conversations may have occurred regardless of our housing, I do think the location does have something to do with it. Cheesy as it may be, Language House was one factor which brought us together—perhaps it can be thought as the catalyst. The constant encouragement to experience different cultures and take on new perspectives really gave us some food for thought. I, as well have others, have contributed to the healthy growth of acceptance and the challenging of existing stereotypes.
My name is Melvin Peña; I’m originally from El Salvador. As in now, I’m a Spanish and Education double major at Goucher, class of 2018. Being part of the Language House has been an amazing experience. You get to experience new cultures while you share your own with the other members in the Language House. There are many benefits of being part of the language house, from being able to have a conversation in the language you’re studying and work together in your assignments to get the opportunity to interact with the professors that also live in the Language House. Either at dinner or during one of the many activities the Language House has to offer. Another benefit of being of the Language House is that you get to live in a suite with one roommate and two suite mates. The suites at the Language House are honestly the best dorms on campus. You have a lot of space in your dorm, and you only have to share a bathroom with three other people.