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  • “Bestimmt wird alles gut”: Journeys and Arrivals in Contemporary German Children’s Books

    Anneli Fjordevik

    Chapter from the book: Jonsson, H et al. 2021. Narratives Crossing Borders: The Dynamics of Cultural Interaction.

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    In the last few years, many people from war-torn countries have left home to seek safety in distant countries. Refugees have come to Europe to an extent that has not been seen since World War II. It is estimated that around 50% of the refugees are children under eighteen and many of them have ended up in Germany. The fact that many people leave their homes and become foreigners in new countries is also noticeable in literature. In recent years, an increasing number of books on this topic have been published, not least children’s books. This chapter considers how escape from war and the arrival situation are depicted in eight picture books published 2016-2017 in German. My focus is on whether the fact that the families have to escape to a foreign country is problematised in any way: How do the children (and their families) in the books deal with the new language and with communication? Are there any difficulties concerning identity and “otherness”? What expectations/reflections (such as whether or not they made the right decision) on the new life – if any – are being related? How does the stress affect them and their families? And do the stories about leaving home and arriving in a foreign place have entirely happy endings?

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    How to cite this chapter
    Fjordevik, A. 2021. “Bestimmt wird alles gut”: Journeys and Arrivals in Contemporary German Children’s Books. In: Jonsson, H et al (eds.), Narratives Crossing Borders. Stockholm: Stockholm University Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.16993/bbj.p

    This is an Open Access chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (unless stated otherwise), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Copyright is retained by the author(s).

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    Published on June 15, 2021


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