In Chapter 1, we saw how peculiarly important the German language is for the selfdefinition and self-image of the German people (but also for the Austrians and some of the Swiss). We are now returning to this theme in the final three chapters, in order to explore in more detail some of the manifestations of the relationship between language and Germanness, and the ways in which this relationship is debated in the public domain in Germany. To this end, much of the discussion will be based on (sometimes quite lengthy) extracts from recent writings taken from the press as well as academic sources. The central question will be: what can ‘the state of the language’ tell us about ‘the state of the nation’?