The core idea of this root was:
habitat, human settlement
It’s the origin of the Romance salon and the English variation saloon and also of the Slavic “selo” which means village.
In German, it ended up being the word for society: Gesellschaf. That originally meant “people who are in a room together”.
Nice : )
So my questions would be:
If we are talking about a firm will it be absolutely clear from the context that we are talking about a company and not a society? Or can this ever be confusing for nativ speaker? Should we always assume society rather than a company unless it’s clear from context?
If we are talking about small groups of people (gamers, a reading group, a group of regulars at a pub, the people who live in particular Kiez) can we use Gesellschaft to refer to them? Or when we add on a prefix (die Kneipe-Gesellschaft??)
I think what I am particularly interested in is the third definition as this matches something I read recently apparently could be interpreted in this way.
So we could talk about a group of people who are meeting each other as eine Gesellschaft.
If i had friends around last night for some biers could i say “I hatte gestern Abend bei mir ‘ne Gesellschaft” ?? Otherwise how would you form sentences using this sense of the word?
The thing that confused me was this from Brecht:
Als jemand in einer Gesellschaft den Eigentumstrieb natürlich nannte, erzählte Herr K
and there’s not so much context. So I was like ok how would i go about translating this?
I think Brecht here means “a group of people talking”, but I can’t be 100% sure without more context.
I don’t like Brecht, by the way. Super overrated imo. But he was a chad in his day. I don’t know if you know, but I think he had several girlfriends at one time and had some of them write his plays for him… grain of salt etc.
Thanks thats clarified this a lot. I don’t know so much about him. We were reading this text from him for my Deutschkurs…
You wouldn’t really use the company-Gesellschaft without an additional qualifier, or at least it’s not common to do that.
In daily life, a company is “Firma” or “Unternehmen” or “Konzern”, but not “Gesellschaft”. That’s more legalese jargon.
A group of people meeting for a purpose is sometimes called a “Gesellschaft” but it’s a fancy, old school term. Young people would NEVER EVER use that to refer to a house party for instance. Think of a fancy soiree.
ok cool I feel much more confident about Gesellschaft now! : ) Danke dir!