Heimatangst: What Does 'Home' Mean to Germans Today?

Current Affairs, Non-Fiction

Caught between shame and longing – the search for a German identity

There's the longing for home and then there's the shame of fully committing to Germany. Jule Lobo gives this inner conflict a name – Heimatangst, or ‘home anxiety’. Speaking to her compatriots, she tries to get to the bottom of this feeling – what is home, and what is typically German? Does the perception of home still ring true, or has it long since been outdated? She explores how heavily National Socialism still weighs on the country today; how the stereotypes about East and West didn’t fall with the Berlin Wall in 1989; how German rappers feel in the land of poets and philosophers; whether kebabs are the new national dish; and which holiday destination is most German – the genteel northern island of Sylt, the Harz Mountains, or Mallorca. The search culminates in the emergence of a new image of home that may have left clichés behind – and a Germany that is looking ahead to new things.

  • Profound, sensitive, funny
  • Both an emotional check-in and a reality check for Germany
  • A strong, young, female voice
Jule Lobo

Jule Lobo, also known as Jule Wasabi, was born in 1993 and studied law, before working as an editor for Neo Magazin Royale. Since 2017, she has hosted various podcasts, such as the award-winning format Kohl Kids, where she talks to Friederike Schicht about reunified Germany, as well as the interview series ‘Obituary for me’ ('Nachruf auf mich'), and Feel the news – what’s moving Germany ('Was Deutschland bewegt'), which she hosts with her husband Sascha.

Heimatangst: What Does 'Home' Mean to Germans Today?

Caught between shame and longing – the search for a German identity

There's the longing for home and then there's the shame of fully committing to Germany. Jule Lobo gives this inner conflict a name – Heimatangst, or ‘home anxiety’. Speaking to her compatriots, she tries to get to the bottom of this feeling – what is home, and what is typically German? Does the perception of home still ring true, or has it long since been outdated? She explores how heavily National Socialism still weighs on the country today; how the stereotypes about East and West didn’t fall with the Berlin Wall in 1989; how German rappers feel in the land of poets and philosophers; whether kebabs are the new national dish; and which holiday destination is most German – the genteel northern island of Sylt, the Harz Mountains, or Mallorca. The search culminates in the emergence of a new image of home that may have left clichés behind – and a Germany that is looking ahead to new things.

  • Profound, sensitive, funny
  • Both an emotional check-in and a reality check for Germany
  • A strong, young, female voice
Bibliographic Data
256 pages, ISBN: 978-3-423-26079-4
First published 2024