Halloween – totally American?

”Halloween culture can be traced back to the Druids, a Celtic culture in Ireland, Britain and Northern Europe. Roots lay in the feast of Samhain, which was annually on October 31st to honor the dead.

Samhain signifies “summers end” or November. Samhain was a harvest festival with huge sacred bonfires, marking the end of the Celtic year and beginning of a new one. Many of the practices involved in this celebration were fed on superstition.

The Celts believed the souls of the dead roamed the streets and villages at night. Since not all spirits were thought to be friendly, gifts and treats were left out to pacify the evil and ensure next years crops would be plentiful. This custom evolved into trick-or-treating.”

This is the story of Halloween, as told on http://www.halloween-website.com/history.htm.

As you can read it originally comes from Europe but nowadays Halloween isn’t popular or even celebrated at all there. For Europeans Halloween is a totally American event and people who do some Halloween stuff anyway are called “americanized” what nobody really wants to admit because it is related to eating a lot of burgers, watching superficial Hollywood blockbusters and, in the past, voting for Bush.

But of course it is a lot of fun to wear costumes what we do on a 3 months lasting event called “Carneval” or “Fasching”. This “5th season” starts on November 11, so check back after this date because I want to tell you a bit more about it.


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