Who’s afraid of the black man: Origin & Alternative

Who is afraid of the black man? Nobody! And when he comes? Then we run! Almost everyone knows that old children's game and has perhaps played it as a child, without making himself bigger idea who this nebulous black man really is. This guide is about the background of the game and called you a few game-alternatives. 

Who's afraid of the black man: Origin & amp; alternatives

Many games we play as a child and do not worry if they allude to a real background. A popular game in German children's birthday for years was musical chairs until anchored in the minds of the post-post-war generation more and more that this playful mockery of the victims of the Holocaust is unpleasant and embarrassing. The game is yes, but fun anyway and was therefore renamed simply. Today you play pogo chairs. The same happened to the sweets with black jacket and white sugar filling, which is now called foam kiss. In this article, it is now a question of whether the game from the black man in a racist colonialist tradition is, and should therefore be avoided or renamed.

in luck! Words from the Middle Ages*

Who is afraid of the black man? Who soll`n that at all be &# 8211; this black man?

The game Who is afraid of the black man is a fishing game in which there is a scavenger, the black man and an undetermined number to scavenging humans. Even today, this game is often played in junior high school from kindergarten to physical education. Again and again the question comes but in respect of this game who this black man should be accurate and many people worry immediately, this term would be racist and would relate to the genetically determined skin color of the unknown man &# 8211; Fear of black people, people of color (POC) would stoked so to speak early childlike rather. However, the game comes even from medieval times and the origin related to the black skin color of a person is more than unlikely.

Who's afraid of black man he could also be a hangman

First, the black man is thus one of many Kinderschreck figures, which are firmly anchored in the German educational history. Today, they no longer seem particularly en vogue, but the childhood of earlier periods was usually accompanied by some anxiety-causing bogies were threatened with those in unartigem behavior. The Bi-Ba-Goblin is one of the more harmless figures with this order and the Sandman, who comes to children who do not want to sleep, got at least through the Sandman broadcast a very positive image.

who has gambling afraid of black man schornsteinfeger childrenIt used to be mainly hunted children through the chimneys to clean them. Here they pass the time with a striped Ringelreihe game. The life of the chimney children is described very vividly and exciting in the children's book The black brothers.


One of these children bogies was the black man has to the then appropriately developed the same game. Very precise knowledge of the origin does not exist, but different assumptions:

  • The black man is so to speak, for the dark side of the Force. He is dressed in black and leads a shadowy existence, he is a stranger.
  • The chimney sweeper Steiger is black &# 8211; it could also be.
  • It can not be excluded that it might is a man with black skin.
  • Death is dressed traditionally black in illustrations.
  • The executioner always wore a black hood.
  • Historically the most plausible: He is a Pestkranker who is infected with the so-called Black Death.

That should be a plague at the black man, provides a very plausible explanation for the color attribution and for the course of the game. After all, who has been touched by a plague, had to fear, to be subsequently infected. On the other hand, these patients were due to their weakness but no serious danger. So: Who's afraid of plague victims? Nobody! And when he comes? Then we run. Educational instruction that would then combine subtly with this game would be, then stay away from plague.

Who's afraid of black man the plague may be

Is the game racist?

The problem is that it hardly matters how the actual historical background of the game is to be evaluated. None of the theories can be so stringent is that not enough would remain room for speculation. One can argue that existing racism and fear of the Other, the stranger reflected in games, songs and neologisms, which in many cases to prove. The image of Africa many generations for example, was marked by Ten Little Indians, one definitely racist song.

but if the Schwarze Peter or the black man stands in direct relation to people with black skin remains to be discussed and is especially intense study of sources.

Who's afraid of black man makes the jim crow museum enlightenmentThe Jim Crow Museum collects racist memorabilia of present and past times and clears up about racism then and now.

Must You Know the Muffin Man? be renamed?

Regardless of whether the game due to a historically racist context &# 8211; it is usually perceived case today. If one surveys the net you will find various brochures about anti-racism or racism that take the game title as a headline and thus put in this important context. However, as well as the chimney sweep guild has selected the game title as the title for one of its brochures. Language is changing and with it the meanings of the terms. If today predominantly a man with black skin color is imagined by the game ends, the game is racist &# 8211; regardless of whether this was sometime originally the intention. That is, to act negative, racist manipulation of children contrary, would be a renaming of the game certainly makes sense.

This is very easy:

  • Who's afraid of Justin Bieber?
  • Who's afraid of big bad man? Or to keep it anti-sexist: Who's afraid of the evil woman?
  • Who's afraid of giant frog?
  • Who's afraid of popelmann (old German bogeyman that could revive)

Racism is one of the major problems of humanity, in which we must work urgently. We are a country of immigration, and increasingly children will find a different skin color in German schools. That this must feel discriminated against by a game like this should be strongly avoided. And since it is ultimately only to the change of an adjective that should be feasible for everyone.

build puppets themselves - great fun for children

Source: Via Shutterstock.com


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