In England is Deutsch ein unbeliebtes Abiturfach, im Vergleich etwa zu Spanisch, weil es als zu schwer gilt (Bericht von der Deutsch-Britischen Stiftung).
According to an article in the Guardian, German is studied less at A-level and AS-Level in Britain because it’s seen as too hard (report by Anglo-German Foundation can be downloaded free of charge here, along with other reports including one on the future of work for lawyers in Britain and Germany).
bq. Catherine Watts, one of the authors of the report, called for a review of the content of the German curriculum at both GCSE and post-16 level to make it more appealing. She said: “I think we should promote the German language in a much more positive way. At the moment, it suffers from a gloomy image.”
This reminds me of the 1978 film ‘Deutschland im Herbst’, by Alexander Kluge and ten others. There was a wonderful scene where Hannelore Hoger, playing a school history teacher, was sent to the (real) SPD conference and asked the delegates what they were planning to do to improve German history, because it was not suitable for teaching. (The figure of Gabi Teichert was developed further a year later in Die Patriotin, a scathing review of which from Cambridge MA does not deter me). Deutschland im Herbst has dated, but it’s a brilliant film showing viewpoints on the Rote Armee Fraktion terrorism. There was a little documentary in it that sticks in my mind showing the family of one of those who died in prison being unable to bury their son inside the city wall and having trouble finding a restaurant to hold a funeral reception.
(Thanks to Desbladet)