19th June 1978: Garfield The Cat

“I am hungry. Therefore I am.” – Garfield

For over forty years, the Monday-hating but lasagna-loving, not over-weighted but under-tall cat brings joy to everyone worldwide.

On 19th June 1978, the first comic strip about the iconic egocentric cat and his somewhat dorky owner Jon Arbuckle was published. Since then, Garfield was everywhere: his adventures were published in more than 2500 newspapers, 100 countries, and 40 languages all over the world.

Why seems everyone to be so infatuated with this cat? He is very impolite, fat, lazy, and always puts himself first – but he is also a cat with a warm and loveable personality. He is a real antihero who unites within himself almost all of the bad characteristics a human could have – and people celebrate him for it. And maybe this is the reason: He is selfish and doesn’t care about it. He is like an old friend who makes us feel a little bit better by showing us that it’s alright not to perform perfectly all the time and that being selfish sometimes helps to protect ourselves. And let’s be honest: When we are on our own, don’t we secretly celebrate Garfield’s behaviour? Don’t we sometimes identify ourselves with him? I think we do indeed. And when being in a good mood, we might reflect on our behaviour and find that life is not bad at all and we should not take ourselves too seriously.

This red tabby cat is a fixed component of pop culture and an excellent resource in the EFL classroom: The drawings are lovely and easy to catch. The vocabulary is quite easy to understand, and above all, students will find points of connection to their own lives very quickly. Moreover, Garfield’s philosophy is very light-hearted and easy to get for everyone – thus, it can motivate to access more challenging tasks. So, teachers, it’s up to you because (to let Garfield speak in his own wise words): “If you are patient…and wait long enough…Nothing will happen!”


In commemoration of America’s Declaration of Independence in 1776, the 4th of July is known for being one big party full of fireworks, barbecues, and baseball games. American media has a huge impact on the rest of the world, and the “American Dream” is a familiar concept to most. So, in honor of today we’d like to highlight some of our favorite American literature and media we feature on our platform!

  • The Truman Show: This dystopian comedy movie explores the power of media, commercialism and simulated reality. Truman has spent his whole life in a town he thought was home, but now turns out to be reality TV show set. The film is a great starting point for discussions surrounding surveillance, reality TV, American stereotypes and the American Dream.
  • Brooklyn: This Irish novel narrates the social difficulties in mid 20th century Ireland, emigration, and cultural identity, all wrapped up in an American Dream love story. The book follows Eilis Lacey, a young Irish woman who cannot find work. Thus, she decides to immigrate to the United States chasing the American Dream. After some initial difficulties, she falls in love with Tony, a young Italian, and they start planning a life together.
  • American Pictures: A Personal Journey Through the American Underclass: This collection of approximately 22,000 photos shows the dark side of the “American Dream”, revealing racism, segregation, social hierarchies and white supremacy. The powerful pictures of Danish photographer Jacob Holdt were not taken with an artistic intention but rather to capture the hardship and brutal reality of America in the 1970s.

Enjoy the summer heat, and don’t forget…you don’t have to be in the US to have a barbecue get-together on the 4th of July! Happy Independence Day everybody!