Stereotyping Afro-German Actors

In German 340, Afro-German Culture and History, we have moved into the project phase and have begun interviewing an amazing group of volunteers who identify themselves as Afro-Germans: An army soldier who was born in Germany, served in the German army, and then moved to the US to enlist in the army; an Afro-German woman of the first postwar generation who had grown up in a boarding school and moved to the US in her mid-twenties; a middle-aged Afro-German writer who moved to the US as an infant and has only recently begun to reflect on what Afro-German means for her. Look for more information as the project continues.

During one of these conversations we also addressed the still rather stereotypical roles Afro-German actors play on German television. Last year, the Norddeutsche Rundfunk broadcast a short documentary on that. The clip is in German, but it basically states that, with few exceptions, black German actors still play mostly asylum seekers, drug bosses, and other “not-normal” characters.


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