Award Winning Song Featuring Auschitwz Reference

I recently came across a Washington Post article that talks about the recent Echo awards in Germany. At the awards ceremony, two German rappers Kollegah and Farid Bang received an award for their record that has a song that features a line where one of the artists brags that “my body more defined than Auschwitz inmates’.” The presentation of the award was quickly criticized by Jewish communities throughout Germany and said that this type of behavior is indicative of a greater problem of rising antisemitism. Given the prevalence of music in modern culture and the cultural weight that it has on young people, it is especially worrisome that acts of antisemitism can be excused by some under the guise of freedom of artistic expression. And given the startling statistics that we have seen in class about the underwhelming about of Holocaust education that so many young people have, it is a potential risk that artists could utilize that gap in information about the Holocaust and capitalize on it with incorporating evocations about the conditions of human beings in concentration camps.

3 Replies to “Award Winning Song Featuring Auschitwz Reference”

  1. I find it very interesting that this song comes out of Germany. Since our class is structured on American memory I often don’t think about how other locations are effected by Holocaust pop culture, especially in Germany. I would have probably assumed there is little talk about the Holocaust in Germany as I would think people are ashamed of it, but there’s always different ideologies at play.

  2. I am very shocked by this. While I very rarely think about popular culture in Germany, I would have thought that Germans try harder than any other country to make politically correct remarks about the Holocaust. It shocks me that a German song would have this sort of reference.

  3. I, too, am shocked by the idea that a song containing lyrics such as these originated out of Germany. Because we tend to portray Germany as a nation that has acknowledged and grappled with its past, it’s easy to believe that they are above producing this kind of thoughtless and destructive material. So, while we can object to the lyrics itself and critique the people who helped the song rise to award winning status, we should be “thankful” it was created because of the conversation it sparked. You were right to point out that it is reflective of rising antisemitism. The idea that the song has become so popular, despite the reference, should scare the German people as well as the rest of the world.

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