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«Tschüss Sepp!»

Pawel Streit

With around 180 inhabitants, Innerthal in Canton Schwyz is one of the many small Swiss communities where the world seems to stand still and remain in order. Persistently one hears: “It’s fine the way it is – why change anything?”

Nevertheless, circumstances are unintentionally set in motion: The primary school, for example, is threatened with closure faced with falling pupil numbers. And apart from the catering trade and a fishery, hardly anyone in the village profits from the growing day tourism, while authorities bicker about who among them is responsible for the removal of the refuse (waste, faeces). For fear of losing control, it seems that the community wants to ignore any change that is not self-initiated and avoid taking decisions.

In his book “Tschüss Sepp!” (“Seeya, Sepp!”), Pawel Streit gathers personal impressions in text and pictures, collected during his stay in the village. He noted observations on the political urban-rural divide, took photographs as a participant observer, exchanged views with locals, even taught at the school and went from being a stranger to becoming an insider.

Children’s drawing, Primary school, Innerthal
Children’s essay, Primary school, Innerthal

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