Dossier: Germany

Emel Zeynelabidin (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Book review: Emel Zeynelabidin's "You grow up only in this life"

The headscarf is not a gauge of devoutness

In her book "Erwachsen wird man nur im Diesseits" (You grow up only in this life), the Turkish-German author Emel Zeynelabidin reflects on the period of her life when she wore a headscarf and explains why she stopped doing so without abandoning her faith. By Annalena JunggeburthMore

Young Palestinians and Israelis at the KfGD dialogue event in Bonn (photo: KfGD)

Israeli–Palestinian dialogue in Germany

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It is possible to work together

While bombs are being dropped and rockets fired back home, a group of young Israelis and Palestinians has come to Germany to talk to each other and to listen to the other side of the story. By Wolfgang DickMore

Yazidis trapped in the Sinjar mountains fleeing from IS (photo: picture-alliance/AA)

Persecution of the Yazidis in Iraq

Don't abandon us!

In Iraq, not only are the Yazidi people being persecuted by IS, their sacred sites are also being destroyed by the jihadists. The Yazidis are now responding by forming troops of fighters to protect these sites. By Joseph CroitoruMore

Arabic calligraphy (photo: picture-alliance/Tone Koene)

The Arabic language

A better understanding

Arabic is spoken in 22 countries, but people from different countries don't necessarily understand each other. The language is split up into numerous dialects, some of which are mutually unintelligible. The Arab spring went a long way towards unifying the way Arabic is used in everyday life. Translators are working on an online dictionary to help standardise the language for business purposes. By Charlotte Schmitz and Guido ZebischMore

A despondent man with his head in his hands (photo: Iris Mostegel)

Trauma therapy for victims of violence in Arab countries

Tortured, humiliated and voiceless

Traumatised victims of violence and war in Arab countries are now finding psychological help in Germany. The unusual thing about the therapy is that their therapists never see their faces; sessions take place anonymously over the Internet. By Iris MostegelMore

Rabeya Müller (photo: Ulrike Hummel)

Portrait of the theologian Rabeya Müller

Equality in the name of Islam

The women's movement within Islam is gaining momentum worldwide. One of the most influential German Muslim women in this respect is the theologian Rabeya Müller. With her clear views and breaks with taboo, she is pushing for change within the Muslim community in GermanyMore

Simin Tander (photo: simintander.com)

The German-Afghan jazz singer Simin Tander

An unknown homeland

Simin Tander has undertaken a musical journey to her roots and to herself. The means of transport are varied: poems in Pashto, English and French, a jazz quartet and a finely nuanced, expressive alto voice. The destination is an exceptional album that transcends the boundaries between jazz, singer-songwriting and world music. Simin Tander's new album impresses listeners with its deep sensitivity and disarming honesty. By Stefan FranzenMore

A Syrian family sitting outside a home for asylum seekers run by the Central Authority for Foreign Residents in the German state of Brandenburg (photo: dpa/picture-alliance)

Book review: Stefan Buchen on Syrian "escape helpers"

Germany's new public enemies?

Germany is proud of its culture of democracy and the rule of law. But how proud should it be of the way it treats those who help Syrian refugees threatened by starvation and mass murder at home to enter the country? In 2013 and 2014, several German-based Syrians have been tried in court for helping their compatriots to flee to Europe. Stefan Buchen has written a book about the matter. By Martina SabraMore

Hartmut Faehndrich (photo: Ruth Renée Reif)

Interview with literary translator Hartmut Faehndrich

"What I don't see is an on-going interest in Arabic literature"

Hartmut Faehndrich is one of the most renowned translators of Arabic literature in the German-speaking world. He has translated nearly 60 novels into German. In this interview with Ruth Renée Reif, he explains why Arabic literature is undervalued in the German-speaking worldMore

Scene from the play "Supermaenner" at the Theater Ballhaus Naunynstraße, Berlin (photo: Ballhaus Naunynstraße)

The emancipation of men with Turkish roots

A closed society viewed from inside

Men in Germany with Turkish roots are starting to break their silence and talk about their problems and how to overcome them in self-help groups and on stage. These "Supermen" have also now made their debut in Turkish literature. By Astrid KaminskiMore

The High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy Catherine Ashton, and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif (photo: Reuters)

Iran's nuclear programme

Hope Must Go On

In view of the stubborn hurdles on the path to a permanent nuclear treaty, Iran and the five UN veto powers plus Germany have agreed to continue their talks. Hope for a settlement remains. Yet the risks are not necessarily getting any smaller. By Ulrich von SchwerinMore

Salafists handing out copies of the Koran in a German city (photo: dapd)

Interview with intelligence operative Benno Köpfer

"You're allowed to be a Salafist in Germany"

More than 300 people from Germany have gone to Syria to join the jihad. In this interview with Jannis Hagmann, Benno Köpfer of the German domestic intelligence service explains what radicalises young people, why not all Salafists agree with the ISIS caliphate and why he drinks the occasional tea with some of themMore

Emrah Serbes. Photo: Iletisim Yayinlari

Portrait of the Turkish writer Emrah Serbes

"Politics is made on the street by the people"

The young author Emrah Serbes is regarded as the "enfant terrible" of Turkish literature. Not only is he one of the most popular authors in Turkey: since the protests in Gezi Park last summer and his active participation in the resistance, many now seen him as the "writer and voice of the people". Ceyda Nurtsch met him at a reading in BerlinMore

Thomas Ostermeier. Photo: Ali Güler. © Thomas Ostermeier

Interview with Thomas Ostermeier

"An Enemy of the People" in Istanbul

Thomas Ostermeier is the artistic director of the Berlin Schaubühne and one of the most creative figures among the younger generation of German theatre directors. His productions are incisive and provocative – something he demonstrated again recently at this year's theatre festival in Istanbul with Henrik Ibsen's play "An Enemy of the People". He spoke to Anna EsserMore

Two Muslim students in headscarves in the audience at a public event at a university. Photo: dpa

France's burka ban

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Excluding the wrong people

We shouldn't be arguing about burkas: we should be abolishing the headscarf bans. They ostracise women who could be building bridges, comments Ursula RüssmannMore

German footballers Lukas Podolski (l.), Mesut Özil, Sami Khedira and Per Mertesacker. Photo: picture-alliance/augenklick/firo Sportphoto

Soccer as a force for integration

Success through diversity

Mesut Özil and his team colleagues not only represent multicultural Germany: they also serve as popular role models within German society. This shows that football should be afforded greater recognition as a force for integration, says Shohreh KarimianMore

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