Intermediate German: the concept of 'Heimat' and refugees in Germany | Institute of Continuing Education skip to content

Institute of Continuing Education


Please note that this course has started and enrolment is no longer possible.

This weekend course will be held in German. It has been designed to give people with a fair comprehension of the German Language (but who might lack fluency and/or the confidence to speak it) the possibility to practise the language in a small and friendly circle of participants.

The concept of 'Heimat' is a fascinating one: notoriously difficult to translate, it evokes ideas of place and identity, of emotions such as nostalgia and loss. It can conjure up a sense of belonging, but can equally reinforce ethnic and racial divisions.

'Heimat' is of course particularly relevant for refugees in the wider sense, and during the weekend we will attempt to trace the points of convergence. Whether it is in the shape of the artists’ colony of Worpswede at the end of the nineteenth century, or in the Nazis’ misappropriation of the word in their slogan 'Zurück in die Heimat' or whether we think of the citizens of the GDR who lost their 'Heimat' when the wall came down, or – more recently – the controversies surrounding Angela Merkel’s welcoming stance in the face of the latest refugee crisis and the emergence of the controversial slogan of 'Neue Heimat'. 

The linguistic level required is intermediate, i.e. anybody within the level A2-B2 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages is welcome to enrol.

No advance reading is necessary for this course.


Unless otherwise stated, teaching and assessment for ICE courses are in English. Students whose first language is not English should refer to the Competence in the English Language Policy for further guidance.

Printable versions of our brochures are available to download from the Institute Publications page.

Course dates

21 Apr 2017 to 23 Apr 2017

Course duration

1 weekend(s)

Course fee


Accommodation fees

Single room: £60 per night

Double/Twin room £50 per person, per night (2 people sharing)



Institute of Continuing Education
University of Cambridge
CB23 8AQ

Qualifications / Credits


Course code