In Germany we don’t say 😃, we say 😐. Why we Germans are rather reserved and how this is linked to intergenerational trauma.

Melanie Stein

Germans are often stereotyped as humorless, unfriendly, and reserved, as depicted in many satirical memes. A scientific examination reveals how historical events such as past wars, dictatorships, and limited access to therapy have influenced the character traits attributed to Germans.
Stage 7

In Germany we don't say: "Wow, what an amazing conference!" We say: "Nich schlecht." You can find lots of funny memes online about German habits. For example, British influencer Liam Carpender humorously highlights these quirks in short video clips. YouTuber Phil Laude's "Alman" series playfully mocks German adherence to rules, while the "Berlin Ausländer Memes" showcase newcomers finding amusement in our bureaucracy and outdated technology.

When we wonder why Germans act the way they do, we often talk about epigenetics and inheritance. Scientists say that the traumas endured by our ancestors can be passed down through generations, potentially leading to issues like anxiety or depression if left unresolved. This helps explain why events like past wars still affect us today. The similarities between the behavior of traumatized people and what's seen as typically German are pretty striking.

Psychologist Melanie Stein uses humorous memes as reference points while seamlessly integrating insights from cutting-edge research in neuroscience and psychology.

Melanie Stein
Gründerin & Moderatorin