who inhabits the city? living diversity

Tour of Keup Street

With its predominantly oriental shops and restaurants, Keup Street - commonly referred to as "Little Istanbul" - is a testament to Turkish immigration history in the Cologne district of Mülheim, east of the Rhine River.

The commercial street made headlines nationwide when it was devastated by a nail bomb attack on 9 June 2004. 22 people were injured, four of them severely. Multiple shops sustained considerable damage. The force of the detonation left one hairdresser ´s salon completely ravaged. And nails scattered about by the explosion damaged several cars parked nearby. For years, nothing was known about the perpetrators, their motive or their background. The possibility of a terrorist attack had initially been ruled out. Speculations emerged based on both anti-immigrant hostility and the assumption of disputes between Turkish business owners. Others presumed a connection between the Cologne bombing and the Kurdish conflict in Turkey. In November 2011, it was discovered that this act could allegedly be attributed to the radical right-wing terrorist group National Socialist Underground (NSU).

the ig keupstrasse association The Keup Street advocacy group
Interessengemeinschaft (IG) Keupstraße began as a citizens initiative in 1978, when a group of dedicated business owners and local residents teamed up to support their street in the heart of Mülheim. This led to the official founding of the association in 1995. Since then, the group has evolved even further. Through community events and public relations activities, its declared objective is to encourage peaceful coexistence and raise awareness among the street?s residents. Moreover, the group aims to promote Keup Street as a lively, multicultural part of the city in the minds of Cologne citizens.

Starting Point: After the show "oorlog"
Monday 14. May, 18:30
Depot II, Schauspielhaus Köln


who does the city belong to? public space as a stage

A city stroll and lecture by the research collective "Metropolenzeichen"

Visual multilingualism is evidenced by business and street signs, tourist information and guide markers. It is closely connected to immigration, cultural and consumer tourism as well as regionalisation tendencies. The interdisciplinary research project Metropolenzeichen (Metropolitan Signs) set out to document all publically visible signs and symbols in selected parts of the cities of Duisburg, Essen, Bochum and Dortmund. The resulting 25,000 photos were entered into a database and systematically analysed according to aspects of linguistics, integration theory and urban sociology.

During a walk through the southern part of Cologne, we will look for indications of multilingualism in public spaces. The subsequent lecture will present the most interesting results of the project and pose the following questions: How are signs and symbols used in public spaces? Which languages appear where - and why? How do people feel about this? What could be improved?

The collective of the research project "Metropolenzeichen" at Duisburg-Essen University consists of Prof. Dr. Evelyn Ziegler, Professor of German Linguistics with a Specialisation in Sociolinguistics at Duisburg-Essen University / Prof. Dr. Haci-Halil Uslucan, Director of the Centre for Turkish Studies and Integration Research as well as Professor of Modern Turkish Studies and Integration Research at Duisburg-Essen University / Prof. em. Dr. Ulrich Schmitz, Dipl.-Päd., Professor of German Studies/ Linguistics and Didactics at Essen University from 1995?2013 / Prof. Dr. Heinz Eickmans, Professor of Dutch Language and Culture in the Institute for German Studies at Duisburg-Essen University.

Sponsored by MERCUR

Starting Point: After the show "Bin ich rechts"
Tuesday 15. May; 17:30 Uhr
Humboldt Gymnasium, Kartäuserwall 40, 50676 Köln;
Ending COMEDIA Theater um 19:30 Uhr