Get Up, Stand Up!

A renowned journalist who has been causing indignation among right-wing voters has written a book on standing up against xenophobia.

Anja Reschke has infuriated nationalist citizens by denouncing the rising number of physical violence against refugees and arson at their accommodations. A comment on national television in which she spoke out against these incidents and the increasingly hostile atmosphere exploded online. The clip has recorded around 20 million views. In “Haltung zeigen!”, Reschke reveals that she has been receiving demeaning mails and hate-filled letters referring to her contested statement nearly each day ever since.

In her book, the Hanns Joachim Friedrichs Award laureate reflects on strict manners during her childhood when her grandmother ordered her to sit upright for dinner. She analyses various terms linked with the subject and argues that expressing one’s opinion does not breach journalists’ vow of absolute independence.

At less than 100 pages, “Haltung zeigen!” makes compelling reading as the book offers a compact overview on what has happened in Germany since the intense immigration of refugees from war-torn Syria in 2015. Xenophobic sentiment has surged to such an extent in the prosperous country that Alternative für Deutschland, a far-right party widely considered as racist, triumphed at several provincial but also the most recent federal election.

Reschke’s courageous appeal is desperately needed in times like these. Her book is a vital contribution to the debate on multicultural tolerance and migration.

Haltung zeigen!
By Anja Reschke
Published by rororo / Rowohlt (www.rororo.de)

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