Architecture, Politics, and Identity in Divided Berlin
Publication Year: 2014
Published by: University of Pittsburgh Press
Title Page, Copyright Page
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Map of Berlin
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Map of Central Berlin
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Introduction: Divided Capital, Dividing Capital
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On August 13, 1961, in the middle of the night, the East German government closed the border between East and West Berlin, halting people, cars, and trams in their tracks and sealing off the western sectors of the city with barbed wire. The acrimony between the eastern and western Cold War powers had been growing since the end of World War II, yet the intracity...
1. Modern Capital, Divided Capital: Berlin before the Wall
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The myriad divisions established in Germany throughout the postwar years, from political to cultural to economic, followed to a large extent the fault lines of existing fissures within the country. Many of these divisions centered on Berlin, which, by the twentieth century, had gained a reputation...
2. A Capital Without a Country: Shaping West Berlin’s Image in the Early Cold War
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In the late 1950s, the debate over the Berlin Question became increasingly contentious, further heightening the political and symbolic import of the divided city and of the efforts to rebuild it. The United States relied increasingly on divided Berlin and its image to define the terms of the...
3. The Unbridled Buildup of Socialism: Defining and Critiquing Heimat-GDR
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Newspapers published by the Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands (SED, or Socialist Unity Party) hailed August 13, 1961, as a victory for East Germany. The German Democratic Republic (GDR), it was claimed, had neutralized the western threat, shutting out the “imperialist aggressors...
4. The Dreamed-Of GDR: Public Space, Private Space, and National Identity in the Honecker Era
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In May 1971, Walter Ulbricht declared that he would be giving up his duties as first secretary of the Central Committee, an announcement that came as a surprise to the East German public. For his replacement, he endorsed Erich Honecker, a high-ranking member of the Central Committee generally...
5. Capital of the Counterculture: West Berlin and the Changing Divides of the Cold War West
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In the 1950s and 1960s, US and West German foreign policies and US- authored propaganda had framed West Berlin as both an autonomous and an international city. In such depictions, West Berlin was established as the capital of the Cold War west and was at the same time “America’s Berlin...
6. Back to the Center: Restoring West Berlin’s Image and Identity
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By the late 1970s, West Berlin’s reputation as a center of protest and dissent was firmly established in much of the western public’s imagination. Although issues such as lack of housing, rising numbers of immigrants, drug abuse, and high unemployment presented challenges in cities throughout...
7. Collapsing Borders: Housing, Berlin’s 750th Anniversary, and the End of the GDR
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If, speaking broadly, the 1960s for East Germans had been characterized by a cautious hope and push for reform within the socialist system and the 1970s, by resignation and strategies of accommodation, the 1980s were marked by widespread frustration and despair followed by resistance...
Conclusion: Constructing the Capital of the Berlin Republic
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During the Cold War, rhetoric in the east and west had attempted to draw clear lines of political, cultural, and economic division. In 1989–90, the collapse of the SED regime and the Volkskammer’s subsequent decision to dissolve the GDR and become part of the Federal Republic seemed to...
Appendix. Governing Entities and Nomenclature, 1949–1989
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The German Democratic Republic (GDR, or East Germany) was formally established in October 1949, when the country’s first constitution was signed. Nominally, the GDR was a multiparty “socialist democracy,” although in practice it functioned as a one-party dictatorship. The leading...
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Page Count: 448
Illustrations: 87 b&w
Publication Year: 2014
Series Title: Culture, Politics, and the Built Environment