Man spricht Deutsch (2023)
Man spricht Deutsch (Speaking German) is an autobiographical art project by Sandra Singh and me, which explores everyday racism, German migration history, and the media landscape of the 2000s. The goal is to create a space for encounters and exchange for people with a migration background through an exhibition and various participation projects. The artworks are intended to actively generate and promote dialogue, while workshops aim to document German migration history and provide a space for processing and reflection. We place particular emphasis on the accessibility of this project, aiming to engage individuals from all backgrounds and educational levels through accessible texts, participatory offerings, and guided tours.
For this project, we had our first presentation in december 2023 at FLORIDA Lothringer 13 in Munich.
We have received the grant Verbindungslinien 2023 from the BBK Munich / Upper Bavaria for this project.
In this case, it manifests as linguicism: the deliberate disparagement of minority languages. When Edmund Stoiber proclaimed in 2006 during a political event, "Whoever riots will be thrown out, and those who can't speak German won't even get in," he certainly wasn't referring to Danes, Americans, and Dutch among us. We now know that learning our mother tongues as children would not have harmed us; on the contrary, it is something we can never make up for. Linguistically assimilated, we are still socially perceived as "different" – foreigners in Germany, only without a voice. A secure retreat into the diaspora and the homelands of our parents is thus denied to us. Language is also identity, a fact acknowledged even by conservative and right-wing parties. In 2015, the CSU, led by Horst Seehofer, called for a law requiring migrants to speak German, even at home. Similarly, in 2018, the AfD (Alternative für Deutschland) demanded that German be enshrined as the language in the constitution. The right to one's own mother tongue (UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 29, 1992) is repeatedly attacked and endangered.