Germans fear language is being ruined by English, other foreign jargon

December 17th, 2008 - 1:07 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Dec 17 (ANI): Germans are fearing that their language is being eroded by waves of English and other foreign jargon.

At least 60 per cent of new words being used in Germany today are English.

After years of post-war Anglicisation and Americanisation, seven out of 10 Germans speak some English, The Telegraph reported.

But experts say there is a growing backlash against the widespread use of foreign terms in the age of globalisation, technology and immigration. Business leaders are growing tired of English management speak.

A fortnight ago, Chancellor Angela Merkels conservative party voted to enshrine the German language in the nations constitution — seen as a pointed gesture toward the large Turkish, Arab and African communities.

And, German companies are starting to shy away from relying on English in their marketing slogans, after years of using the foreign language so often that sometimes their own customers didnt know what they were talking about.

A slogan for the perfume maker Douglas, Come in and find out, became famous because most people thought it was challenging customers to come into the stores then try to find their way out again.

A Jaguar car slogan, Life by gorgeous — which didnt made sense in English — was interpreted by many Germans as referring to living in Georgia. A satchel, in German, is often referred to by the English term Bodybag.

Many people have decided that enough is enough, The telegraph quoted Roland Kaehlbrandt, author of a book called German for Elites, as saying.

They are not taking companies that only use English seriously any more. We are very open-minded and positive about everything that comes from outside, but there is a fear now that we may forget our own language and our own culture.

After the war and during the Cold War in West Germany, English — particularly through the influence of the US — was simply cooler than German, he said. (ANI)

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