„knackwurst“ and „lumpenproletariat“- German loanwords
Posted 16. September 2009on:
Being in contact with the English language-reading articles or books, watching movies in English- you will – as a German native speaker- at some point encounter German words looking pretty awkward to you in the English context.
A lot of loanwords illustrate German food clichés such as „knackwurst“ and „sauerkraut“.
Others are, of course, taken from the 3rd Reich (oops- another loanword) like „blitzkrieg“ and „fuehrer“. And then you have those words referring to Germany’s more pleasant image as the country of poets and philosophers: „wahlverwandtschaft“, „weltanschauung“ and „bildungsroman“.
I kind of like „lumpenproletariat“, „alpenglow“ from the German word „Alpenglühen“ and of course, „frauleinwunder“.
I think that „verboten“ also sounds quite funny if you pronounce it the English way in a sentence like „Certain phrases are verboten.“ (BBC News) or “There is a reason why Rudy Giuliani is, in early polls, the surprising leader for the GOP nomination in 2008, even though he is pro-choice, pro-gay rights and many other verboten things.” (Newsweek Online, 4. September 2005).
Another word „stolen“ from German is „kitsch“, frequently used in contexts such as “the kitschy title sounds a warning gong at once” (Time, 15. September 1980, S. 51) or „[…] and it is kitsch art of the highest order.“ (BBC News).
Do you know any examples of German loanwords in English or other languages?