Super, ihr habt den Hinweis zur Öffnung des Ausgangs gefunden:

██║   ██║
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Dies ist der Hinweis damit ihr das Lösungswort-Anagram, also die drei Blöcke, übersetzen und korrekt anordnen könnt! Googelt einfach den folgenden Begriff: "l337 sp34k", um zu verstehen was die  Textzeichen bedeuten. Wenn ihr die Blöcke aus den drei Kompetenz-Checks richtig angeordnet habt, habt ihr das Lösungswort für den Ausgang aus dem Escape-Room! Ihr braucht das Lösungswort nicht zu übersetzen sondern sollte es in der l337sp34k Variante eingeben.

  _ ____ ____  _              ____  _  _   _   
 | |___ \___ \| |            |___ \| || | | |   
 | | __) |__) | |_   ___ _ __  __) | || |_| | __
 | ||__ <|__ <| __| / __| '_ \|__ <|__   _| |/ /
 | |___) |__) | |_  \__ \ |_) |__) |  | | |   < 
 |_|____/____/ \__| |___/ .__/____/   |_| |_|\_\
                        | |                     

Explorations in English Language Learning

A bloody civil war rages for more than two decades in a country whose coasts are struck by devastating floods as a result of global warming and rising sea levels; corruption, disease and death govern the lives of many millions. This sounds like a story one would expect to be set in a so-called “Third World country”. However, this debut novel by Omar El Akkad is surprisingly set  in the late 21st century United States of America, that, at this point, are not united anymore in the way we know it. The gulf between the United States and the secessionist Free Southern State during the Second Civil War is massive while a new empire, the Bouazizi, has risen in the Middle East and is the new global superpower.

It is in this scenario that we follow Sarat Chestnut as she develops from a young and happy child, who is nonetheless aware of certain issues that arise in both her family and the Louisiana region, to a teenager struck by boredom and hopelessness in a refugee camp and eventually an adult who experiences love, separation and the loss of her loved ones and is willing to do anything to take revenge.

This novel shows the circumstances under which a person becomes a terrorist, and questions the notions of patriotism and terrorism from a different perspective than the Eurocentric one we are mostly exposed and accustomed to. The complex psychology of a person who decides to do anything as they believe it to be right becomes apparent without evoking sympathy, but all the more empathy for Sarat.

In some way, the novel by El Akkad, Egyptian-Canadian novelist and journalist, is a warning: It quite intimidatingly provides an outlook to the potential serious consequences of the social and cultural divisions between the US-American North and South and of global warming by including different types of texts, such as newspaper clippings, interviews, memoirs and government documents into the storyline.

El Akkad, Omar: American War. New York: Random House, 2018.

However flawed and overdramatized the story feels from time to time – the Southerners start their rebellion as they are prohibited from burning petroleum as an emergency measure in times of extreme climate change in which Florida is already completely submerged and Louisiana is following – I can still recommend this debut novel because it encourages you as a person socialized in the west to put yourself in the shoes of the world’s displaced people who are affected by war, torture, and climate catastrophes and thus to develop empathy.


El Akkad, Omar: American War. New York: Random House, 2018.