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Tag Archives: german politics and society

The Fall of the Berlin Wall

The Berlin Wall was both the physical division between West Berlin and East Germany from 1961 to 1989 and the symbolic boundary between democracy and Communism during the Cold War. The Berlin Wall was erected in the dead of night and for 28 years kept East Germans from fleeing to the West. The fall of the […]

German Unity Day

Two weeks after the fall of the Berlin Wall, on 28 November 1989, West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl announced a 10-point program calling for the two Germanys to expand their cooperation with the view toward eventual reunification. On 18 May 1990, the two German states signed a treaty agreeing on monetary, economic and social union. On October […]

Berghahn Books at the GSA 2015 Conference!

We are delighted to inform you that we will be attending the annual German Studies Association conference in Washington D.C., on October 1-4, 2015. Please stop by our stand to browse our latest selection of books at discounted prices & pick up some free journal samples. If you are unable to attend, we would like […]

Author of ‘Jesus Reclaimed’ Earns German Decoration

The President of the Federal Republic of Germany, Joachim Gauck, honoured Rabbi Walter Homolka with the Officers Cross of the Federal Merit Order.   On February 27, 2015, the Prime Minister of the State of Brandenburg, Dr. Dietmar Woidke, handed over the insignia in the state chancellery in Potsdam.   Woidke thanked Rabbi Homolka for […]

A Lived Journey: Tracing ‘The Path to the Berlin Wall’

The Berlin Wall may have been erected in 1961, but the figurative foundation was laid in 1945, as the Soviet Union’s Communist Party and its allies made selections of their areas of influence. In The Path to the Berlin Wall: Critical Stages in the History of Divided Germany, to be published this month, author Manfred […]

Understanding Europe before, after 1945

In Between Yesterday and Tomorrow: German Visions of Europe, 1926-1950, published last month, author Christian Bailey seeks to understand how Germans became such “good Europeans” after 1945. Whereas many histories of European integration tend to largely focus on the diplomatic goings-on between elites, this book focuses on how support for a united Europe was cultivated in […]

Key to Transformation is Understanding the ‘Fatherland’

The parallels between the political environment of the “Arab Spring” countries and Cold War Germany can be striking, according to Alexander Clarkson, author of Fragmented Fatherland: Immigration and Cold War Conflict in the Federal Republic of Germany, 1945-1980. In these cases, when diaspora communities returned to their countries of origin, there was an energy for […]

Opening Cassirer and Arendt’s ‘Hidden Conversation’

Hannah Arendt was a German-Jewish political theorist; Ernst Cassirer was a German-Jewish philosopher. The ‘liberal Jewish ethics’ of the two come together in Ned Curthoys’ The Legacy of Liberal Judaism: Ernst Cassirer and Hannah Arendt’s Hidden Conversation. The author explains below his fascination of and engagement with the scholars.   _____________________________________ Berghahn Books: What exactly […]

Is All Repression Created Equal?

The recent revelations by Edward Snowden about the extensive online information-gathering activities of the National Security Agency (NSA) have led to a flurry of comparisons in the German media between the American agency and the infamous East German Ministry for State Security, or Stasi. According to a popular statistic, the Stasi could have filled 42,000 […]

Blackface in Berlin Play: Racism or Tradition?

In January 2012, a white man was cast for the part of an African American man in “I’m Not Rappaport” for the German adaptation of the U.S. play. The plan to use blackface makeup—common in American theater up until the Civil Rights movement—to change the man’s appearance stirred controversy, and was called out as racist. […]