Getting on our soapboxes won’t help us to understand and to stand up to the Pegida movement. Pegida has a prehistory that reaches the depths of our society. The opinions represented by the movement have been spread by the media in Germany over preceding years and anticipated by notable intellectuals and authors: Thilo Sarrazin, Alice Schwarzer, Hans Magnus Enzensberger, Ralph Giordano, Monika Maron, Günter Wallraff, Necla Kelek, Henryk M. Broder, Hamed Abdel-Samad, Dan Diner, and Tilman Nagel are some of the most well known. The polemic from Stefan Weidner reveals how ideals of reason, freedom, and democracy have been abused for years to create an atmosphere against Muslims living in the country, which eventually leads to open racism. Anti-Pegida. Eine Streitschrift! is now available on Amazon Kindle Singles.

Stefan Weidner is an author, translator, and Islamic studies expert living in Cologne. Since 2011 he has been Editor-in-Chief of Fikrun wa Fann (Art&Thought), a culture magazine published in Arabic, English, Persian, and German by the Goethe Institute. He was awarded the Clemens Brentano Prize of the city of Heidelberg in 2006; the Johann Heinrich Voß Prize of the Deutsche Akademie für Sprache und Dichtung (German Academy for Language and Literature) in 2007; and the Paul Sheerbart Prize given by the Heinrich Maria Ledig-Rowohlt Foundation in 2014. In 2009/2010 he was the August Wilhelm von Schlegel visiting professor in Poetics of Translation at the Freie Universität Berlin. From 2011 to 2012 he was the first Thomas Kling Poetry Professor at the University of Bonn. Weidner is a member of the German PEN Center and founding member of the Academy of the Arts of the World, Cologne.