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The Humanities Conference 2003

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Presentation Details

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Fear of the Future in Contemporary German and Austrian Gothic Subcultures

Gabriele Eckart.

The fear of the future, which is expressed in songs by and in interviews with members of this specific subculture, is, specifically, a fear 1) of English becoming the dominant language and 2) of a culture of simulation due to the role that modern media plays in the process of globalisation. As a response, many groups insist on singing in German, and they adapt poetry of romantic and expressionist German writers that was preoccupied by similar fears of a future that would eliminate differences. In my paper, I will concentrate on two groups: Immortelle and Das Ich. I will play one of each group's most important songs and show how the specific combination of text and music serves to deliver their desperate message.


Gabriele Eckart  (United States)
Assistant Professor of German and Spanish
Department of Foreign Languages
Southeast Missouri State University

Ph.D. from University of Minnesota (1993), Author of several articles on German and Spanish literatures, and of a book on Wolfgang Hilbig.

  • Fear of the future
  • Gothic subculture
  • German versus English

(30 min Conference Paper, English)