“The End of Jamaica” Is Germany’s Word of the Year

“The End of Jamaica” Is Germany’s Word of the Year

Linguists in Germany have selected “Jamaika-Aus” or “Jamaica’s end” as the word of the year after coalition talks between the nation’s three political parties under the so-called Jamaican arrangement collapsed. The word of the year was picked to describe the breakdown in talks between German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, the liberal Free Democrats (FDP) party, and the Green Party. The word “Jamaika-Aus” was selected because it represents the unique difficulties associated with building coalitions that resulted in a “historic new situation” for Germany, according to the Society for German Language. The word also reflects the new meaning for the word “Jamaica” in German, which refers to the fact that the colors of the three political parties involved match those used on the Jamaican flag. Other words that had been in contention for word of the year were “Ehe für alle” or “marriage for all,” which referred to the country’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage, while in third place was “#MeToo,” that is used on social media to share stories about sexual harassment. The odd “covfefe” tweet made by Donald Trump was recognized as being influential in 2017, as was the phrase “Diesel-Gipfel (Diesel Summit), that referred to significant meetings between politicians and German auto makers. The jurors who chose the top 10 words of the year said the choices reflect words that best characterize 2017, and not those used most often.

Source: Politico 

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Stephanie Korney