The end of the Vaterland?

Over the past week, there’s been a surprising political furore in Germany about its national anthem.

A civil servant sent out her spring newsletter, which included a suggestion that the Deutschlandlied should be changed to include women as well as men. “No more Vaterland!” was the basic message. It wasn’t meant for a wide readership, but some for some reason, it caused a storm, with everyone from Angela Merkel to the far-right having their say.

You can read about it all in this piece I did for The New York Times.

That article also includes all the national anthem news that’s happened so far this year – everywhere from Spain to Bosnia – so give it a read!

The secrets behind national anthems in 1,000 words…

…and a poor joke about Coldplay.

A piece I’ve done for the BBC went online today (above’s a picture of it on the front page).

I’ve somehow crammed 18 countries into it. Although apologies to anyone from Oman or Zimbabwe, who I seem to insult!

If you know of any secrets it doesn’t mention, please let me know.