Alexander Görlach – Top journalist, smart and a sophisticated speaker: about malice, the future of media and the Islam

11. October 2016 – Katharina Schlangenotto

His life could have been quite different. He could have grown up as the son of Turkish guest workers with the name of Firat Kaya. However, this wasn’t meant to be for the eager young man with a great future ahead. Instead, he was adopted by a German couple, was named Alexander Görlich and grew up in a small and very German village in the south of Germany.

There is a German saying literally meaning that in such quiet and secure surroundings “the church must be in the center of village life”. This was very much the case in Wiesoppenheim and thanks to an inspiring priest, young Alexander became very interested in catholic religion.

Alexander Görlach: theologian, German studies, political and musicologist

After he finished school, he decided to study Catholic theology and philosophy followed by German studies, political science and musicology.

Alexander Görlach became a successful journalist, columnist, author, television, radio commentator and press spokesman. He worked as deputy spokesman in the German Bundestag and was head of department at the German poitical and culture magazine Cicero. Today, apart from being a sought-after speaker, he is dedicated to be the publisher of the German online and print debate magazine The European.

The temper of a start-up entrepreneur

The German online magazine renk once wrote a description of him hat hit it to the point: “Görlach has the temper of a start-up entrepreneur, his positive attitude and belief in progress remind of Silicon Valley, California, where the attitude clearly is: everything is gonna be better. ”

With the publication of the magazine The European, the journalist Görlach has brought a piece of Silicon Valley to Germany. In 2009, more or less as a pioneer, he started his magazine purely online. Only since 2012, The European is also available in print. In Germany, traditionally, magazines are started in print and then follows online. But as a matter of fact, Alexander Görlach has never  much cared about what other people think and believe.

“The Internet is a temporary phenomenon,” – not!

The title of one of his lectures reflect his opinion of the Internet. For the matter of media, he believes that print products will almost exclusively only be magazines and that these would be luxury products. In former days, a newspaper had to be read in order to be informed. This is no longer the case. Even though the joy of reading would continue . However, with new products that satisfy a new desire would be needed.

He believes that German Small Businesses had to learn that the Internet is a friend and no enemy. He can’t understand why claims from political forces to forbid or crush competitors of the new industry are received with enthusiasm. In contrary, he is sure that the Internet could have the potential to secure our prosperity in the longterm. It must only be re-thought, even and especially in the German Small Business sector.

We want to see you fail! Why malice corrodes our country

In September 2014, Görlach’s new book entitled “We want to see you fail! Why malice corrodes our country ” appeared. It deals with malicious joy and how it rapidly sprawls upon famous people who are caught in a misstep. The Suisse newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung wrote in a book review: “A very thought-provoking, compelling call for moderation.”

In his lectures, the catholic Alexander Görlach explores the phenomenon of malicious joy, in German “Schadenfreude” and calls for more forbearance, humility and compassion. He asks why it is so difficult to show decency and respect and to keep a distance.

His clear message is: less pillory and more leniency in judging people. That could make the world a better place.

How islamic is Europe? A continent at the crossroads?

Görlach has, among other things, studied at the Islamic University of Al-Azhar in Cairo. In his lecture on the Islamic Europe, he talks about the immigration of the Islamic world and how it worries many Europeans. He asks: “Can Western values ​​and Islamic self-understanding go together and if so, how?”

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