“Wir können alels außer Hochdeutsch” sounds as if people from “Baden Wuerttemberg” are very full of themselves and think, that they’re the best people from Germany- or from the world? But in fact that’s just a saying. There is a litte rivalry between the different German states. But I think nobody would say, that this saying is absolutely correct. What do you think? What are advantages and disadvanteges from Baden-Württemberg? What special skills do people from Baden-Württemberg have?
In my opinion, swabian people are very special. There is a rivalry in Germany, especially in Baden Württemberg, but it isn´t very serious. The people are making often funny jokes about the swabian people, and the swabians are making jokes about the others. I think that many cliches about swabians aren´t right. Maybe there are people who act like a typical swabian, but specially young people are different.
I had the experience that people from the north of Germany laughed about how we talked and I didn’t think that I have such a strong dialect that it sounds that different and funny for them. There are some very typical swabians like for example my granddad talks very swabian and he often tries to spare everything but he is not stingy or just trinks bear and eats spätzle so I think some of the cliches have a true background but they are illustrated too extreme.
In my opinion for some swabians it´s right that they can´t speek standard German, but these are mostly the older one´s, who ever lived here. The younger generation don´t have the typical swaibian spelling only on some letters you sometimes can here our origin.
At example my parents don´t speek with a swabian dialect, but some wordes we use, you only know in Baden Württemberg and people from other parts of Germany don´t understand them.
I met some guys from northern Germany and they made jokes about such words.
But is it a problem, that these cliches are illustrated so extremly? For me it is no problem… Of course other people from the north of Germany also lough about my swabian dialect, but they think it’s cute. In fact it’s just normal, that there are different dialects. And yes, I do love Spaezle and I do love our “Wasen” or the Baverian “Oktoberfest”. But that’s not the question…. the question is, why the german state “baden-Württemberg” should be allowed to say, that peoble from “Baden-Württemberg” can do everything, except speaking proper German? Maybe beacause of the better school system and because Baden-Württemberg is quite wealthy. There are many big factories, because the site-related factors are very good here… I think in comparison to other German states, Baden-Württemberg is somethimes better (but of course only in some things)… Maybe it would be even more interesting to find out, what is better in other German states?
I had a difficult approach to my “Swabian idendity” the whole life. To be honest, until 2 years ago, the stereotypes of Swabians as being conservative, narrow-minded and penny-pinching were the most defining perceptions I had of “Baden-Württemberg”. But all this changed with new experiences and insights, the first being, that nobody, born in “Baden-Württemberg, can flee from his roots. Even if I believed many years, i could resist the Swabian accent – and all my friends, condemning me for not being a “real Swabian” confirmed me in this faith – i was bitterly disappointed, when I spoke with new friends from other German states: Already after 5 minutes most of them stated: “Ahhh, you come from the “Schwabenländle””. Thus, its true: There is no Swabian in the whole world, who can hide his “Swabianness”. Even if you trie to avoid special swabian sayings and words, your way of intonation will unmask you as a Swabian your whole life. So its true: Nobody, who grew up in our “Ländle” is able to learn real “Hochdeutsch” later in his life.
But the cognition, which opened my access to my own swabian identity, was a completely different: A deeper insight into the special characteristics of our Swabian mindset.
Yes, its quiet right, that Swabians are in some way conservative – but this has its positive aspects as well: The Swabian work ethic (“Schaffe, schaffe – Häusle baue”) is in some points a lively counter-concept to the beasty capital market capitalism, which dropped us in the recent financial crisis. And that Baden-Württemberg still has the most constant economic middle-class in Germany is not only due to Daimler & other great companies in Baden-Württemberg, but at least partly to our specific swabian interpretation of being “conservative”, which includes a unique definition of being responsible and down-to-earth.
Thus, overestimating the own importance harmonise with the Swabian mindset. Swabians tend towards being down-to-earth and no real Swabian would proclaim loudly that his state better than the rest of Germany. Of course, nobody can deny that the people of Baden-Württemberg have a healthy self-confidence. But this self-confidence is a positive characteristic as well, because it allows us, to combine down-to-earthness and our Swabian conservatism with a specific Swabian interpretation of being open-minded and somehow cosmopolitan. If you are searching for evidences, which proof our open mindset, you just have to look at the many technical innovations from Baden-Württemberg, the great political openness we proofed through being the first german state, electing a Green as Minister-President or the great percentage of Swabians who broke out to make their experiences in our german capital Berlin. Thus, “Wir können alles” is just a expression for this specific pragmatism and interest in completely everything. Maybe it would be verbalized as “We are ready to try everything”. I wouldn’t say that Swabians are the better people (we have many mistakes as well) but because of this unique combination of open mindset and conservatism at the same time, at least makes me a little bit proud of my roots.
I think every part of germany has its special value. We are special for our economy and the way we are saving our money. So is for example Nordrhein-Westfalen famous for the Ruhrgebiet, a big mining area. So it is more the place people are than the people themself. If you move to another state of germany you will slowly get the values of them. Of course people can see your roots by your language, but not by the way they behave.
So far some advantages of Baden-Württemberg are our economy which is very constant, as Caro said our school system (even it is the second difficultiest in germany) and the conservatism which makes us down-to-earth.
Disadvantages are that every person from outside knows you are from BW by your accent. And I really mean anybody in the world because we are so famous. Another is that we have a university system which is totally obsolete, because you can only go to university if you have special marks.
In conclusion I am proud to be Swabian
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