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Peace at All Costs: Catholic Intellectuals, Journalists, and Media in Postwar Polish–German Reconciliation

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Volume 23

Contemporary European History

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Peace at All Costs

Catholic Intellectuals, Journalists, and Media in Postwar Polish–German Reconciliation

Annika Elisabet Frieberg

254 pages, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-024-9 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (July 2019)

eISBN 978-1-78920-025-6 eBook

Hb View cartYour country: United States - Click here to remove geolocation   Buy the eBook! $29.95 Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Available in GOBI®


“This book provides a valuable view into the mechanisms of reconciliation in the wake of terrible atrocities. It also complicates, in a useful and provocative way, the standard narrative of German-Polish relations after the Second World War.” • Jesse Kauffman, Eastern Michigan University

“Based on extensive archival and media research, Peace at All Costs chronicles in incredible detail Polish-German postwar reconciliation efforts. By giving such a vivid account of the personalities and motivations behind this process, it puts a human face on a political narrative.” • Malgorzata Fidelis, University of Illinois at Chicago


Although it was characterized by simmering international tensions, the early Cold War also witnessed dramatic instances of reconciliation between states, as former antagonists rebuilt political, economic, and cultural ties in the wake of the Second World War. And such efforts were not confined to official diplomacy, as this study of postwar rapprochement between Poland and West Germany demonstrates. Drawing on a wide range of sources, Peace at All Costs follows Polish and German non-state activists who attempted to establish dialogue in the 1950s and 1960s, showing how they achieved modest successes and media attention at the cost of more nuanced approaches to their national histories and identities.

Annika Frieberg is an Assistant Professor of History at San Diego State University. Her research and teaching focus on war and genocide, gender, conflict resolution, media, national, and transnational questions in Central Europe. She is the co-editor of the volume Reconciling with the Past: Resources and Obstacles in a Global Perspective (Routledge, 2017).

Subject: History: 20th Century to Present Peace and Conflict Studies Media Studies
Area: Germany Central/Eastern Europe