Many scholars have discussed the ways in which former East and West Germany are not reuniting, but how the wall in people’s minds remains while the remnants of the actual wall have long been destroyed. The author of this book thus approaches the question of Germany’s unity by looking at its future - the children that were born post Germany's reunification. Through a discourse analyses in 10th grade history classrooms of former East and West Berlin high schools, this book addresses matters of national identity and unity from a linguistic anthropological standpoint. Based on Michael Billig’s theory that national identities are inculcated through every-day banal interactions, student-teacher communication is examined through the lenses of language socialization and language ideology. Here, the speakers’ use of pronouns and greeting practices and the juxtaposition of the local Berlin dialect to the German standard language are analyzed in their power to create a shared national identity.
This book gives new insights to anyone interested in Germany's reunification process from a micro-analytical, bottom-up perspective.