Our home (song)
Song content and text
Our homeland is one of the most sung songs of the post-war period in eastern Germany. It was created in 1951 and interprets the completely new understanding of the term “ home ” in a clear distinction from National Socialism .
The song describes the abundance of nature and being on earth. It is not limited to “the animals of the earth”, but also sings about “the birds in the air” and “the fish in the river”, “the trees in the forest”, “the grass in the meadow” and “the grain the field ". The use of the term “people” is due to the fact that everything that was sung about was common property when it was written in 1951. However, the text also implies that each individual is jointly responsible for protecting it.
Since the issue of the text is formulated completely non-violently and free of any limitation to a form of government, religion, community or language group, the song is becoming more and more relevant today.
It is picked up by various songwriters and mostly sung with a newly written ending by the author Viola Zetzsche:
(...) and we protect it because it belongs to all of us, because it belongs to humans and animals.
Text: Herbert Keller
is not just the towns and villages.
Our home is also all the trees in the forest, our home
is the grass in the meadow, the grain in the field and the birds
in the air and the animals of the earth.
And the fish in the river are home.
And we love our home, the beautiful one.
And we protect it because it belongs to the people,
because it belongs to our people.
Dissemination and adaptation
Angelika Weiz wrote and sang a critical expansion of the text in 1989. The song appeared on the long-playing record Heimat , which was withdrawn due to this text.
As a counterfactual stylistic device, the song in the DEFA film Die Architekten (1989) accompanies scenes of street canyons, the Berlin Wall, industrial complexes and prefabricated housing estates. In the movie Good Bye Lenin! it is presented by two alleged young pioneers. In Michael Herbig's film Ballon (2018) , the song is performed by a children's choir in the title sequence.
In 1983, the Polish rock band Kult sang the shortened German original of the song “Unser Heimat” in their first live repertoire. As an announcement, the frontman Kazik Staszewski read a translation into Polish in an emphatically naive way.
In the last verse of his song “Heimat” from the album Berliner Republik (2014), the German cabaret artist Rainald Grebe uses the melody from “Unser Heimat” and a significantly changed version of the text. Ironically, it is no longer “trees in the forest” that define home, but “ Köttbullar and hot dog at IKEA ” and other contemporary phenomena.
- Alan Confino: Germany as a Culture of Remembrance: Promises and Limits of Writing. University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill 2006, ISBN 0-8078-3042-9