In the Rhineland, Carnival would be unthinkable without the dancing girls known as Funkenmariechen. To get into shape, the dancers train all year long, because the acrobatic routines are very strenuous.
When revelers in costume dance in the streets then the carnival season has reached its peak in Germany. Test your knowledge and find out how crazy about carnival or "jeck" you are.
A TV sketch about Africa during China's popular New Year celebrations has triggered accusations of racism and neocolonialism. DW's Frank Sieren says the usually hyper-sensitive country sometimes lacks empathy.
Carnival starts in Cologne's streets on Thursday and as always, it will draw thousands of revelers. If you follow the wise articles of Cologne's "Basic Law," you, too, can enjoy what people there call the "fifth season."
Berlin residents originally from the Rhineland who love to celebrate carnival have tried to import the fun and partying to the German capital — in vain, as DW columnist Gero Schliess observes.
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