Us Europeans

Archives for Us Europeans

Regional variety

Most countries that partly consist of islands will have most of their economic activity on the mainland, preferably in a capital which is centrally located. Denmark is a bit different from that. The Danish economy revolves around the islands Sealand and Fynn. The Danish `mainland` is called Jutland. It is the only part of Denmark that shares a land border with Germany. In history, however, Jutland used to be the poorest and least developed part of the country. Today`s article describes the differences between Denmark`s various regions.

Posted by Bruno

Fairytale city

Denmark has quite a couple of internationally known heroes, but few of them are as well-known as fairytale writer Hans Christian Andersen. His name itself may not be known everywhere, but his stories of the `Ugly Duckling` and `The little Mermaid` are commonly read all across the Western hemisphere and possibly even beyond. What is there to know about this man, and how do the inhabitants of his birth place Odense feel about the heritage of such a famous writer?

Posted by Bruno

Happiness explained

Time after time, international polls show that the Danish are the happiest people Europe, usually slightly ahead of fellow Scandinavian countries. Danes are in the enviable position of not having much to worry about. After having seen the other 26 EU countries, I do have some ideas about how Danes can be happier than the others. But what do they themselves think about it?

Posted by Bruno

While on this trip, it took me some time before I felt comfortable interviewing people about their own lives rather than about abstract subjects. I must say I enjoy I have come to enjoy doing these interviews, not in the least because it takes less effort to understand one person than to understand an entire society. Today`s one-(wo)man interview is about the life of Danish Camilla who is 30 years old and works in an afterschool institution that takes care of children with brain damage. This is a short synopsis of her life so far:

Posted by Bruno

Historical mistakes

Each country has a different way of dealing with its history. The Portuguese are nostalgic about it, the Hungarians proud, while the Poles are trying to eradicate the negative consequences that their history still casts on them. Almost every country glorifies its past by honouring those who helped create, protect or even enlarge the nation. The situation in Germany is a bit more complicated than that. How does the current generation of young people deal with the legacy of Germany`s troubled past?

Posted by Bruno

A little more than one month before the Us Europeans project will come to an end. I hope that those who hooked on have enjoyed traveling along over my shoulder and will equally appreciate the remaining 31 articles. While this particular mission is coming to an end, I am also working on what the next project will be. I therefore use this article as a `call for projects`. If anybody has interesting ideas about how to promote cross-cultural understanding and European integration, I will be more than happy to make contributions to those.

Posted by Bruno

Every country in the former Eastern Block somehow participated in the overthrow of communism. Poland`s most influential anti-communism movement was formed in the early 1980s. Under the name of Solidarnosc, a group of shipyard workers founded the first non-communist labour union in the communist world. Initial strikes proved counterproductive on the short term. On the long term, Solidarnosc successfully undermined the communist system to finally overthrow it by the end of 1989.

Posted by Bruno

Getting to Berlin after spending two weeks in Poland is quite an event. More so than most Polish cities, Berlin is huge, international and diverse. All of that becomes instantly clear to me when my train arrives at Berlin`s new Central Station: a huge railway in the centre of the city that serves as an immense crossroad. On the exact border of former East and West, I am left wondering how much both sides are still different. Before diving into that, here`s a first impression of what people remember from the years surrounding , the changes caused by the reunification of Germany.

Posted by Bruno

In God we trust

After Malta, Poland is probably the second most religious country in the European Union. In the past, it was the Catholic Church who gave Poland its first national heroes. It was the same church who equipped people with inspiration to bear the oppression of communism. Religion, combined with the concept of family, remain strongly influential in the Polish mentality of today.

Posted by Bruno

Poland is one of the few countries where many people head North during the holidays. The Baltic Sea coast is one of the most popular destinations for young Poles who leave on holidays. The concept of leaving the country to celebrate holidays abroad is relatively new, but the market for such vacations is developing at full speed. More and more people are exchanging the Polish beaches for something more exotic. Today`s question to young Poles in Wroclaw: what`s Your program for this summer?

Posted by Bruno