Rassismus ist eine Ideologie, die Menschen aufgrund ihres Äußeren, ihres Namens, ihrer Sprache, ihrer (vermeintlichen) Kultur oder ihrer (vermeintlichen) Herkunft abwertet. Wenn Menschen nicht nach ihren individuellen Fähigkeiten und Eigenschaften oder danach, was sie persönlich tun, sondern als Teil einer vermeintlich homogenen Gruppe abgewertet und ausgeschlossen werden, dann ist das Rassismus. Es gibt viele Dimensionen und Formen von rassistischer Ideologie und rassistischer Diskriminierung. Rassismus ist ein gesamtgesellschaftliches Phänomen, von dem Universitäten nicht ausgenommen sind.

People affected by racism

This topic page was designed for all people affected by racism. It does not matter what kind of racism people are affected by. An overview of different types of racism can be found under the lexicon tab.

Support and advice

There are various internal and external information and counselling centres for university members and staff affected by racism. Do not doubt your perception and trust your own feeling. No one has the right to cross your boundaries. Keep a memory log to document assaults and possible witnesses. In case of incidents of racist discrimination and violence, you can visit various internal and external information and counselling centres.

Commissioner for equal opportunities

The commissioner for equal opportunities advises on discrimination as well as harassment and violence. As an elected representative, he provides independent advice. The counselling is oriented towards your concrete needs - to defend yourself against discrimination and to enforce your rights. You can present your problems in a confidential discussion to get a realistic picture of the further possible steps. The decision as to whether and how you want to defend yourself is, of course, entirely yours. You decide how to proceed. Referral to other specialised counselling centres is also possible. The counselling is free of charge.

AGG complaint’s office

As an employee, you can turn to the complaint’s office under the General Equal Treatment Act in the event of incidents of discrimination and violence and file a formal complaint.

Student Council

The Anti-Racism Department provides advice to students who experience racism and racist discrimination and network initiatives. This student service offers affected students low-threshold access to initial counselling.

RAA Leipzig e.V.

The Raa Leipzig e.V.-Opferberatung counsels and supports people affected by right-wing motivated and racist violence and discrimination. berät und betreut unter anderem bei Betroffenheit von rechtsmotivierter und rassistischer Gewalt und Diskriminierung.

Saxony Anti-Discrimination Office Advice Centre

Discrimination happens everywhere: at work, in shops, in public authorities, or even when looking for a new flat. When people experience discrimination, it is good not tob e alone. The office in Leipzig of the Saxony Anti-Discrimination Office Advice Centre supports you in dealing with what you have experienced and advises you on how to stand up for your rights.

MIA – Melde- und Informationsstelle Antiziganismus

MIA is a civil society reporting and information centre for the nationwide monitoring of antiziganism, i.e. racism against Roma and Sinti.

The Reporting and Information Centre collects information on how and to what extent antiziganism is perpetrated in Saxony and publishes it regularly in the form of a report. As part of a nationwide working group, they document antiziganist cases in Saxony, offer initial and referral counselling to those affected and inform the public.

Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency

The Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency provides initial assessments of discrimination cases by telephone. The legal counselling team provides information on rights and, if suitable, can seek an amicable settlement. Both enquiries and telephone counselling can take place in German sign language.

Support Compass

Support Compass is an app of the association of counselling centres for victims of right-wing, racist and anti-Semitic violence. The app is encrypted and communication takes place with professional counsellors. The app primarily offers help in finding counselling centres nearby.

In the case of stressful issues, free contact points are open to all university members and staff. Whether it's doubts about your choice of study, fears, contact difficulties, depressive moods, experiences of violence, sexual assault or problems with alcohol/drugs, and much more. The counselling sessions are strictly confidential.

Psychosocial counselling of the Studentenwerk Leipzig

The Psychosocial Counselling Service (PSB) of the Studentenwerk Leipzig advises students on difficulties in studying, personal conflict situations or psychological stress. Common topics include experiences of discrimination, experiences of violence or sexual assault, or problems with alcohol and drugs. For quick contact, the 20-minute open individual counselling can be used. The PSB also offers 50-minute individual counselling sessions with appointments and group services.

Psychosocial counselling for employees

The psychosocial counselling centre for employees of Leipzig University supports you in challenging life situations. Common topics include conflicts with colleagues or superiors, and experiences with violence or sexual assault. You can make an individual appointment for counselling by email.

Psychosocial Counselling Centre of the Central Student Advisory Service

The Psychosocial Counselling Centre of the Central Student Advisory Service advises students at Leipzig University on personal difficulties during their studies and their impact on their study skills. Common counselling topics include dealing with stress and excessive demands, emotional crises or doubts about study and life planning. You can make individual counselling appointments by email.

Psychological Counselling Centre of the Centre for Teacher Education and School Research

The Psychological Counselling Centre of the Centre for Teacher Education and School Research offers systemic-oriented counselling to student teachers at Leipzig University. Common topics of counselling are depressive symptoms, interpersonal conflicts, or acute life crises. Individual counselling appointments can be made by email.

Psychosocial Counselling Centre of the Student Council

The Psychosocial Counselling Service of the Student Council of Leipzig University is a low-threshold contact point for all students at Leipzig University. Common issues include psychological crises, drastic life events or problems in coping with everyday life. Individual counselling appointments can be made easily by email.

University Groups and safer spaces

Safer Spaces are places that are designed so that people can feel secure and protected there. Since safe spaces can never be 100 percent guaranteed, the term safer spaces is also used.

BPoC Hochschulgruppe

The university group for Black, Indigenous and People of Colour offers networking and empowerment. For example, the group is active on Instagram and organises community meetings at changing locations.

RosaLinde Leipzig e.V.

The RosaLinde Leipzig e.V. association has formats that explicitly address (post)migrant, refugee, black, indigenous and of colour LGBTQIA* people and provides information about them on Instagram and Telegram.

Somewhere Inbetween Jam

The aim of the Somewhere Inbetween Jam project is to network local and international BIPoC and FLINTA dancers in order to sustainably promote the visibility of coloured artists and the next generation of dancers in East Germany.

Music of Color

The group Music of Color organises community spaces and hosts radio shows, publishes music, and organises parties.

Balance Club Culture Festival

Once a year, the collective organises a festival in Leipzig lasting several days, including parties, performances, and lectures. The aim of Balance is to create safer club spaces for FLINTA, BIPoC and queer people.

KritMed Leipzig – kritische Medizin Leipzig

The group deals with the health consequences of racism, racism in the health system and racism-critical education of future doctors.

support f(x) - Schnittstelle für Awareness

Support f(x) strengthens and promotes awareness and anti-discrimination work in the context of events. The aim is to jointly sensitise a broad public and counteract organised power structures. A central building block is the network. As a supra-regional interface, the community is to be sustainably supported in its self-organisation. The focus is on the exchange and sharing of resources and knowledge.

Allyship - Supporting affected people

Racial discrimination can make people ill and poison the work environment. If you observe racist discrimination or violence in your work or study environment, support the person concerned. Be aware of your own limits and only help within the scope of your possibilities. For the person affected, talking to an uninvolved person is often a difficult and courageous step, because they usually have to continue working with the people in the work or study environment for a longer period of time.

1 Resistance starts in seemingly inconspicuous situations: Do not laugh along when racist slogans or jokes are made. Make it clear to the person making the slogans that their behaviour is not welcome.

2 Talk to people in your work or study environment if you suspect or witness that they are being racially discriminated against.

  • Take your time for this conversation and create an atmosphere of trust. Tell the person concerned objectively what you have observed, offer the person help.
  • Offer to seek counselling or accompany them to counselling if you can.
  • Important: Do not do anything that the person concerned does not want.
  • Make it clear to the person concerned that only the harassing person is responsible for their misconduct.


Also: ally, supporter, advocate

A person who is not part of a marginalised group, e.g., the trans community, but actively supports it, is called an ally or advocate. An ally actively works to end intolerance, educates others about the issues of the marginalised group, and uses this position of not being part of the marginalised group to advocate for equality for people who are discriminated against.

People that get read as Asian are contradictorily affected by both positive and negative racism in Germany. On the one hand, they are often described as "model minority" and played off against other (post)migrant groups; on the other hand, they are portrayed as a homogenous mass that poses a threat to the majority society. Anti-Asian racism in Germany includes different forms of violence. These range from verbal microaggressions and structural discrimination to physical attacks and murders. In this context, the racialised attributions that are widespread in popular culture and media reporting also differ according to gender: Thus, Asian-read women are sexualised, exoticised and infantilised, while men are desexualised and feminised.

For some years, various terms and theoretical concepts have been discussed in academia to capture the devaluation, exclusion, as well as the discrimination of Muslims and people that get read as such. The term Islamophobia, which is widespread in international usage, is little used in Germany. Here, on the one hand, the conceptual pair of Islamophobia and Muslimophobia has established itself as part of a syndrome of "group-related hostility towards people". From the perspective of racism research, Islamophobia and Muslimophobia are on the other hand often classified as a form of culturally based racism that ethnisises religious affiliation and thus also affects people who are not necessarily religious practitioners because of their "ancestry". Anti-Muslim racism thus shows that categories such as ethnicity, culture and religion can merge.

Antisemitism is not to be understood as a sub-form of racism, but as a phenomenon that intersects with racism. Anti-Semitism shares with racism the fact that it imagines a homogeneous group to which supposed collective characteristics are attributed. A specific feature of antisemitism is that it not only constructs its enemy image as inferior or inferior, but also stylises it as superior at the same time. Thus, anti-Semitism serves both to devalue Jewish people and to reduce the complexity of modern societies by constructing an enemy image of the supposedly 'powerful Jew' who secretly exerts control over the economy, the media, or political institutions. In an antisemitic worldview, 'Jewish forces' are also suspected of being behind political upheavals such as wars, revolutions, or economic crises. Accordingly, the assertion of a 'Jewish world conspiracy' is a constitutive component of antisemitic ideologies. Thus, anti-Semitism also functions as a pattern of world interpretation.

Anti-Slavic racism, or racism against Eastern Europeans and South-eastern Europeans, follows similar principles to other racisms. Anti-Slavic racism is linked to the expansion and killing policies of the National Socialists, has a colonial structure, but is also expressed in part with reference to the rejection of certain nationalities. People from Eastern Europe experience racism not because they are white, but despite it. Anti-Slavic racism refers, among other things, to language, accent, appearance, or behavioural and character attributions , as well as culture.

Racism against Sinti and Roma touches on different levels. On the one hand, Sinti and Roma are stigmatised. They are attributed with supposedly deviating, contradictory characteristics (romanticising or criminalising). On the other hand, racism against Sinti and Roma defines structural and institutionalised discrimination, such as more difficult access to education or resources. The G-word is a defamatory foreign term and is rejected by members of the Roma minority. The term is an attribution of negative, but also romanticised stereotypes and says nothing about the self-image of those so designated. Sinti and Roma were victims of persecution and extermination under National Socialism. This genocide is called Porajmos (devouring).

Anti-Black Racism (ASR) is a specific form of racism and has a tradition in Europe and Germany since the time of enslavement. ASR is a specific degradation, dehumanisation, and racist discrimination against Black people of African origin. Notwithstanding the reality of discrimination and hierarchisation by 'skin shade', ASR is not reducible to discrimination in terms of so-called skin colour, as specific dynamics exist in anti-Black discrimination, and these are experienced by people of African origin with different 'skin tones'.

Person or People of Colour is a political self-designation of and for people who are not white and have a common horizon of experience in the white-dominated population. The self-designation is deliberately used to distinguish oneself from the designation "migrant" or "migration background", which do not place the linguistic focus on experiences of racism, but rather on experiences of migration. BIPoC (Black or Indigenous PoC) explicitly includes Black and Indigenous people.

The term "Cancel Culture" derives from the term "to cancel," which means to "abandon", or "strike out" something. It is claimed to be a widespread phenomenon where individuals, particularly from the fields of science, art, and politics, who are disliked, have their support withdrawn or face a campaign against them, often through social media. The objective would be to tarnish their reputation, hinder their professional endeavors, or undermine the recognition of their work. Those accused of politically incorrect or discriminatory behavior, as well as their defenders, use the term Cancel Culture to protest against this alleged uncivil practice. There is uncertainty regarding the existence of Cancel Culture and, if it does exist, whether it can truly be considered a widespread phenomenon. According to its critics, it represents an evolution of Political Correctness, demanding strict adherence to societal and linguistic norms, particularly concerning purportedly or genuinely disadvantaged groups. Supporters, who may not necessarily identify as such or wish to be seen as such, perceive Cancel Culture as a figment of imagination or a buzzword aimed at obstructing enlightenment and the pursuit of justice.

The term empowerment originally comes from the field of psychology and social pedagogy, it can best be translated as "self-empowerment" or also "self-competence". Empowerment includes strategies and measures that help people to lead a self-determined and independent life. Empowerment aims to enable them to represent and shape their concerns.

Abbreviation for women, (lesbians), intersexuals, non-binary and trans persons. The "L" is not always included in the abbreviation, as being lesbian is not a gender identity. However, lesbians are often affected by multiple marginalisations and discrimination and are therefore often included.

The social science concepts of institutional discrimination and institutional racism refer to the interaction of social and state institutions and authorities, their norms and practices in the production and reproduction of racism. In this approach, racism is not understood as purely individual misconduct, but as a phenomenon of exclusion, dehumanisation, systematic discrimination and violence as well as unequal distribution of resources, reproduced by social structures. Institutional discrimination and racism can be seen in the housing and labour market as well as in the education, health, training, and justice systems. With regard to racial profiling, the focus is on the legal basis that allows for the control of persons on the basis of racialised characteristics, as well as the social relationship through which certain groups marked as 'different' are excluded from the society presented as white and criminalised.

Microaggressions are controversial in research. These are everyday communications that are perceived as assaultive by those affected, e.g. subtle humiliations and belittling.


Beliefs and practices based on the systematic devaluation and exclusion as well as disadvantage of certain groups of the population to whom biologically or culturally constructed, unchangeable and allegedly inferior characteristics and behaviour are attributed.

The political self-designation for the national minority is Sinti and Roma. Roma is the umbrella term for a diverse group of people who migrated from India and present-day Pakistan to Central, Western and Northern Europe in the 13th and 14th centuries. The Sinti settled mainly in Western Europe, the Roma mainly in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.

Prejudices can be held towards a situation, person, or group for example, and they can be held by individuals, groups, or institutions. The consequences of such biases can be negative for the groups or individuals concerned, but they can also be positive.

Some of these biases can be conscious (so-called explicit bias) or unconscious (so-called unconscious or implicit bias). Here, age, gender, origin, (physical) abilities, religion, sexual orientation, body/appearance and many other characteristics can become the object of prejudice. Every person has unconscious prejudices, and these can even contrast with one's own conscious values. But it is precisely this unconsciousness that makes it so difficult to detect and counteract unconscious bias.

Biases usually result from stereotypical perceptions that we derive as thought and reaction patterns from our own previous experiences or reports of others in order to be able to react more quickly to new information. They stem from the human tendency to reduce the complexity of social worlds through categorisation.


Wokeness is an attitude and movement of vigilance and mindfulness. It entails attentively observing the events happening in the world and striving to eradicate anti-Semitism, racism, sexism, violence, environmental destruction, factory farming, and other perceived evils by raising one's voice. In English, "to be woke" means to be alert and aware of injustices of all kinds; "woke" is the past tense of "to wake" and signifies awakening. In German, "woke" is used as an adjective ("Ich bin woke" - "I am woke") or as a noun (referring to the woke movement or culture).

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