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This study, then, seeks to categorize what remains of the rich variety of this ethnic group’s humor; and, after noting various theories of ethnic humor and comparing German Russian humor to Jewish humor, to discuss the place of humor in a modem multicultural democratic society.Much of the material I’ve gathered for this project occurs in the German dialect.
Therefore, it might be appropriate at the onset to point out how the form of the dialect spoken by German Russians – something called is just a fancy way of saying that after I’d tracked mud onto my grandmother’s clean linoleum floor, instead of politely asking me to go outside and wipe my boots, she’d announce, in a combination of cranky humor and correction, “These folk proverbs, which illustrate German Russian cultural beliefs and attitudes, date back to eighteenth century Germanic provinces and are, I think, the earliest evidence of German Russian humor. On the prairie, German Russian settlers and their children used them in daily life, to pass to future generations distilled peasant wisdom, and, also, to have a little fun.
Their sheer number and variety gives an indication of the depth of German Russian folk culture. I’ve heard my mother and grandmother recite these proverbs on many an occasion.
D.—A Ward County deputy who had alleged sexual harassment and hostile work environment failed in his attempt Tuesday to get another audience with the Ward County Commission.
Commissioners rejected Tim Poston's request to get on Tuesday's agenda, and upon concluding...
Here are two that I remember: Chants of that nature could also be adapted for other purposes, like the one heard in 1965 at the Mc Intosh County basketball championship.
There was a long-standing, heated athletic rivalry between my hometown of Wishek and neighboring Ashley, both of which German Russian immigrants settled.
Once, commenting on two rather eccentric people who were getting married, my grandmother said, “Yah, even a crooked pot has a cover.”notes the rich mother wit of the German Russian colonists in Russia, and their quickness with repartee, along with the wide variety of jokes, insults, zingers, wisecracks, put-downs, and puns which were part of their daily lives. If that wasn’t a folk proverb, it should have been, for its hard-edged brevity seemed typical of much German Russian short humor.
Height also quotes a German Russian saying which demonstrates this ethnic group’s attitude toward joking and fun: This past summer (1998), at my hometown centennial celebration, I overheard a conversation about someone who’d married for the third time. Some German Russians, it was once said, had a hard nature, but also a great belief in God.
Volga Germans still living in Russia, when asked why they used so many nicknames, replied, “To keep each other straight.” (Kloberdanz, p.121)Besides providing identity, nicknames also enlivened everyday German Russian life with a dash of humor.