Photo for Margarethe Hattingh

Margarethe Hattingh

South Africa
BA in Economics, Politics, and Social Thought (2019)

Where are you from and which program are you enrolled in at Bard College Berlin?

I am South African. I was born in Hamburg. My childhood played out in Canada, my adolescence in South Africa. Chile saw my teenage years. I am currently enrolled in the EPST program at BCB.

What drew you to Bard College Berlin and why did you ultimately decide to enroll as a student?

A respected professor of mine drew my attention to the BCB website. We explored it together. He showed me the qualifications of the professors and briefly explained the school's peculiar and turbulent history.

I considered.

The mystique of Europe, a land yet unknown to me, had long ago caught me in its spell.

I studied the little stacked book icon representing the EPST program. It offered all that I was afraid to admit to myself I was lacking and looking for.

I applied.

What do you like about campus life at Bard College Berlin?

Campus life was a safety net. It allowed me to lose myself in my studies and forced me to confront myself. I am glad for the exposure.

What do you enjoy about living in Berlin?

I enjoy its darkness, its mystery, its raw sincerity hidden behind a wall of smoky glamour. I enjoy balancing my body in the U-bahn and watching the people of all ages and all types pass in and out of the opening and closing doors at each stop. I enjoy wondering about the who and what and why of the here and now; watching people who are watching people while watching themselves in the context of it all. I seamlessly join their ranks. We are all just passing through. I enjoy its ultimate unknowability. It continues to discover itself in the ambitions and hopes of citizens who pulse through veins of metro lines and dwell in organs of infrastructure. I enjoy watching sunlight filter through the leaves of trees and the fact that one can reliably find a park on a surprisingly large quantity of street corners.

Write briefly about a text you've read for one of your courses that's left a lasting impression on you.

It feels inappropriate to write on an individual text. Their individual threads are woven into a yet unfinished tapestry.

How do you think the education you receive at Bard College Berlin will help you in the future? What does a liberal arts education mean to you?

This is too big of a question to answer here. I discuss the subject at length on the school blog. Check it out here, if you'd like.