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Collage of various people and landmarks of Europe© Groupe Dejour

Germany’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2020
Tell Me About Europe

Europe is more than a continent or an idea. Europe consists of many different stories – personal stories of people from different generations. The project “Tell me about Europe” brings the memories of well-known Europeans alive and invites you to listen and join in the discussion. This, alongside a number of other projects, is presented by the Goethe-Institut and the German Federal Foreign Office during the German Presidency of the Council of the European Union from July until December 2020.

#TellMeAboutEurope #GoetheForEurope #EU2020DE

With "Tell me about Europe", we invited the public in London and twelve other European cities to discuss together Europe's past, present and future. The discussion was based on interviews with well-known Europeans, which have been collected in the European Archive of Voices. In it, contemporary witnesses, born before 1945, told young people about their life paths. They touched on topics such as war and conflict, the disparities between town and country, gender (in)justice, religious freedom or the recent return of nationalism. The different perspectives on Europe from East and West were also tangible. A sound collage by the sound artist Marc Matter took up passages from the conversations and made them apparent for the guests at each event.

The stories encourage reflection on the current state of Europe. Europe has been in a serious crisis for some years now. The consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic have exacerbated this crisis in recent months. What do young people want to give to continue this intergenerational project and to continue writing history? What values have we built Europe on? What can and should a political, social and cultural project look like in the future?

Survey: Your Europe

At the end of the Europe-wide event series "Tell Me About Europe", the Goethe-Institut called on people to share their personal thoughts on and wishes for Europe. More than 300 participants from 26 countries responded to our call in December 2020 and told us about their Europe.

  • People feel as citizens of... © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    People feel as citizens of...
  • Borders people still see in Europe today © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    Borders people still see in Europe today
  • People would commit to Europe by... © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    People would commit to Europe by...
  • Hopes for the future of Europe © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    Hopes for the future of Europe
  • Who participated in this survey? © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    Who participated in this survey?
  • Development of solidarity people predict for Europe in 30 years © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    Development of solidarity people predict for Europe in 30 years
  • Three keywords people associate with Europe © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe-Dejour.de
    Three keywords people associate with Europe

Erzähle mit von Europa - Tschechien © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Czech Republic: Prague, 9 September 2020
Vyprávěj Mi O Evropě

The series begins on 9 September at the Goethe-Institut Prague with the Czech-German author and sociologist Alena Wagnerová (born in 1936), who talks about her personal experiences and her view of Europe. The evening is supplemented by the sound collage of Marc Matter and moderated by Zuzana Lizcová.
Watch the recording of the talk on Youtube!

Erzähle mir von Europa - Finnland © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Finland: Oodi, 15 September 2020
Kerro Minulle Euroopasta

On 15 September, different generations will meet in Helsinki in the Oodi City Library to discuss questions  of how we can learn from history and what the future of young people in Europe could look like. The discussion will be moderated by Johanna Vuorelma. 

Erzähle mit von Europa - Kroatien © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Croatia: Zagreb, 1 October 2020
Pričaj Mi O Europi

At the Urania Cultural Centre in Zagreb on 1 October, Croatian-born translator Truda Stamać (born in 1942), the linguist Aida Alagić and the journalist Nora Sefa and history professor Tvrtko Jakovina will offer insights into their stories about Europe. The talk will be moderated by Ivana Dragičević.

Erzähle mir von Europa - Bosnien und Herzegowina © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Bosnia & Herzegovina: Sarajevo, 10 October 2020
Pričaj Mi O Evropi

In the format of the "World-Café" method, people of different generations and socio-cultural backgrounds will come together on 10 October in Sarajevo. Together with political scientists, theologists and professionals from the cultural sector they will discuss topics ranging from home and origin, religion and feminism, the EU system, freedom of expression to (trans-)identity.

Erzähle mir von Europa - Norwegen © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Norway: Oslo, 12 October 2020
Fortell Meg Om Europa

In Oslo on the 12 October, moderator Erle Marie Sørheim, author Joanna Rzadkowska, singer Karin Krog and musician John Surman will talk about the question of Norwegian relation to the European continent. They will discuss the meaning of and ambivalent feelings towards Europe as well as the Norwegian attitude in comparison to other countries.

Erzähle mir von Europa - Luxemburg © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Institut Pierre Werner (Luxembourg), 19 October 2020
Ziel Mir Iwwer Europa

On 19 October Sandra Gugić, a German speaking author of Serbian origin, and Meris Sehovic, the co-president of Déi Greng, will be discussion Europe as a “dream word”, as a precarious creation and a historical construct in Luxemburg. Biographical, political and cultural perspectives are interwoven with different views from the East and West.

Erzähle mit von Europa - Albanien © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Albania: Goethe-Zentrum Tirana, 22 October 2020
Më Fol Për Europën

On 22 October, artist Mariana Kostandini, political scientist and journalist Nora Sefa, cultural scientist Melanie Henke, the journalist and translator Ben Andoni and the moderator Arian Leka will talk about the life of Maks Velo as well as their personal stories of and perspectives on Europe.

Erzähle mir von Europa - Georgien © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Georgia: Tiflis, 13 November 2020

On 13 November, the discussion in Tbilisi will revolve around the European idea in Georgian literature. The moderator Lascha Bakradse will approach the topic with the writers, Lascha Bugadze and Ana Kordsaia-Samadashvili.

Erzähle mir von Europa - Schweden © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Sweden: Stockholm, 17 November 2020
Berätta För Mig Om Europa

Two panel discussions on the topics “generations” and “identity” will be held on the 17 November in Stockholm. Guests of the evening will be: Rosaline Marbinah, Hanna Rajs Lara, Jörg Nies as well as Inger Enkvist. The talks will be moderated by the journalists Mats Almegård and Harald Hultqvist.

Erzähle mir von Europa - Italien © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Italy: Rome, 18 November 2020
Raccontami dell'Europa

In Rome on 18 November, women of different generations trace the development of feminism, from the achievements of the 1968 movement to the current role of women in sustainability politics. With the moderator Milvia Spadi, the guests will discuss the concept of Europe and the feeling of European togetherness from a feminist perspective.

Erzähle mit von Europa - Russland © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Russia: Moscow 19 November 2020
Расскажи Мне О Европе

Sergej Buntman, editor at the radio station Echo Moskvy, moderates a discussion with the topic "Dialogue between East and West" with author Ludmila Ulitzkaja on 19 November in Moscow. The audience can pose questions and participate in the discussion.

Erzähle mit von Europa - Frankreich © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

France: Strasbourg, 24 November 2020
Raconte-Moi l’Europe

The multivocality of Europe will play a prominent role in the event on 24 November in Strasbourg. Here, the sound collage of Marc Matter will lead through the discussion about Europe and its borders. The choir, consisting of a representative oft he European Parliament, the authors Kristof Magnusson and Nora Bossong as well as political science students of the University of Strasbourg will be conducted by the journalist Annette Gerlach.

Erzähle mit von Europa - Großbritannien © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Great Britain: London, 2 December 2020
Tell Me About Europe

The closing event of the Tell Me About Europe series will be celebrated in London with an online discussion. The panel will be moderated by the journalist Rosie Goldsmith and will invite British and UK-based artists, cultural practitioners, politicians, journalists and authors from different generations to share their very personal stories about Europe and their hopes for its future. The event will be accompanied by a newly commissioned dance performance based on the sound installation I Don’t Want to Be an Island.

I Don't Want to be an Island (Marc Matter, 2020) © Goethe-Institut | Design: Groupe Dejour

Sound Art: "I Don’t Want To Be An Island"
How Does Europe Sound?

Sound artist Marc Matter explored the diversity of languages and opinions in Europe as part of the project "Tell me about Europe". From a selection of interviews in the European Archive of Voices, he created a sound collage celebrating the diversity and variety of voices and languages.
Listen carefully and immerse yourself in the sound of the voices of Europe!

I Don't Want to be an Island (Marc Matter, 2020)

Interviews from the "European Archive of Voices"

In conversation with young people, people born before 1945 like former President of Iceland Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, French screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière and Slovakian philosopher Egon Gál, talk about their lives and experiences of war, oppression and flight in Europe.

Tell me about Europe Collage (Detail): © privat/TEMPUS CORPORATE

das goethe

“das goethe“ is the Goethe-Institut’s cultural magazine. It appears twice a year as an insert in the weekly German newspaper “Die Zeit“.

Cooperation partner:
Arbeit an Europa is a group of young Europeans who have come together to help shape the future of Europe through dialogue and exchange. The European Archive of Voices is one of a range of projects being developed in cooperation with a network of supporters across Europe. Arbeit an Europa organises regular discussion workshops in different European regions, which aim to explore ideas of European identity, and facilitate discussion with people across Europe.

Curatorial team: Edouard Barthen and Leona Lynen

“Tell me about Europe” is a project by the Goethe-Institut, supported with special funds from the Federal Foreign Office for the the German Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2020.

Hellgrünes Logo des Goethe-Instituts auf weißem Grund Logo EU 2020