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German History from the Margins

Edited by Neil Gregor, Nils Roemer, and Mark Roseman

German History from the Margins offers new ways of thinking about ethnic and religious minorities and other outsiders in modern German history. Many established paradigms of German history are challenged by the contributors' new and often provocative findings, including evidence of the striking cosmopolitanism of Germany's 19th-century eastern border communities; German Jewry's sophisticated appropriation of the discourse of tribe and race; the unexpected absence of antisemitism in Weimar's campaign against smut; the Nazi embrace of purportedly "Jewish" sexual behavior; and post-war West Germany's struggles with ethnic and racial minorities despite its avowed liberalism. Germany's minorities have always been active partners in defining what it is to be German, and even after 1945, despite the legacy of the Nazis' murderous destructiveness, German society continues to be characterized by ethnic and cultural diversity.

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German Home Towns

Community, State, and General Estate, 1648–1871

by Mack Walker

German Home Towns is a social biography of the hometown Bürger from the end of the seventeenth to the beginning of the twentieth centuries. After his opening chapters on the political, social, and economic basis of town life, Mack Walker traces a painful process of decline that, while occasionally slowed or diverted, leads inexorably toward death and, in the twentieth century, transfiguration. Along the way, he addresses such topics as local government, corporate economies, and communal society. Equally important, he illuminates familiar aspects of German history in compelling ways, including the workings of the Holy Roman Empire, the Napoleonic reforms, and the revolution of 1848.

Finally, Walker examines German liberalism's underlying problem, which was to define a meaning of freedom that would make sense to both the "movers and doers" at the center and the citizens of the home towns. In the book's final chapter, Walker traces the historical extinction of the towns and their transformation into ideology. From the memory of the towns, he argues, comes Germans' "ubiquitous yearning for organic wholeness," which was to have its most sinister expression in National Socialism's false promise of a racial community.

A path-breaking work of scholarship when it was first published in 1971, German Home Towns remains an influential and engaging account of German history, filled with interesting ideas and striking insights—on cameralism, the baroque, Biedermeier culture, legal history and much more. In addition to the inner workings of community life, this book includes discussions of political theorists like Justi and Hegel, historians like Savigny and Eichhorn, philologists like Grimm. Walker is also alert to powerful long-term trends—the rise of bureaucratic states, the impact of population growth, the expansion of markets—and no less sensitive to the textures of everyday life.

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German-Jewish Thought and Its Afterlife

A Tenuous Legacy

Vivian Liska

InGerman-Jewish Thought and Its Afterlife,Vivian Liska innovatively focuses on the changing form, fate and function of messianism, law, exile, election, remembrance, and the transmission of tradition itself in three different temporal and intellectual frameworks: German-Jewish modernism, postmodernism, and the current period. Highlighting these elements of theJewish tradition in the works of Franz Kafka, Walter Benjamin, Gershom Scholem, Hannah Arendt, and Paul Celan, Liska reflects on dialogues and conversations between themandonthereception of their work.She shows how this Jewish dimension of their writings is transformed, but remains significant in the theories of Maurice Blanchot and Jacques Derrida and how it is appropriated, dismissed or denied by some of the most acclaimed thinkers at the turn of the twenty-first century such as Giorgio Agamben, Slavoj Žižek, and Alain Badiou.

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German Nationalism and Religious Conflict

Culture, Ideology, Politics, 1870-1914

Helmut Walser Smith

The German Empire of 1871, although unified politically, remained deeply divided along religious lines. In German Nationalism and Religious Conflict, Helmut Walser Smith offers the first social, cultural, and political history of this division. He argues that Protestants and Catholics lived in different worlds, separated by an "invisible boundary" of culture, defined as a community of meaning.

As these worlds came into contact, they also came into conflict. Smith explores the local as well as the national dimensions of this conflict, illuminating for the first time the history of the Protestant League as well as the dilemmas involved in Catholic integration into a national culture defined primarily by Protestantism.

The author places religious conflict within the wider context of nation-building and nationalism. The ongoing conflict, conditioned by a long history of mutual intolerance, was an integral part of the jagged and complex process by which Germany became a modern, secular, increasingly integrated nation. Consequently, religious conflict also influenced the construction of German national identity and the expression of German nationalism. Smith contends that in this religiously divided society, German nationalism did not simply smooth over tensions between two religious groups, but rather provided them with a new vocabulary for articulating their differences. Nationalism, therefore, served as much to divide as to unite German society.

Originally published in 1995.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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The German Patient

Crisis and Recovery in Postwar Culture

Jennifer M. Kapczynski

The German Patient takes an original look at fascist constructions of health and illness, arguing that the idea of a healthy "national body"---propagated by the Nazis as justification for the brutal elimination of various unwanted populations---continued to shape post-1945 discussions about the state of national culture. Through an examination of literature, film, and popular media of the era, Jennifer M. Kapczynski demonstrates the ways in which postwar German thinkers inverted the illness metaphor, portraying fascism as a national malady and the nation as a body struggling to recover. Yet, in working to heal the German wounds of war and restore national vigor through the excising of "sick" elements, artists and writers often betrayed a troubling affinity for the very biopolitical rhetoric they were struggling against. Through its exploration of the discourse of collective illness, The German Patient tells a larger story about ideological continuities in pre- and post-1945 German culture. Jennifer M. Kapczynski is Assistant Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures at Washington University in St. Louis. She is the coeditor of the anthology A New History of German Cinema. Cover art: From The Murderers Are Among Us (1946). Reprinted courtesy of the Deutsche Kinemathek. "A highly evocative work of meticulous scholarship, Kapczynski's deftly argued German Patient advances the current revaluation of Germany's postwar reconstruction in wholly original and even exciting ways: its insights into discussions of collective sickness and health resonate well beyond postwar Germany." ---Jaimey Fischer, University of California, Davis "The German Patient provides an important historical backdrop and a richly specific cultural context for thinking about German guilt and responsibility after Hitler. An eminently readable and engaging text." ---Johannes von Moltke, University of Michigan "This is a polished, eloquently written, and highly informative study speaking to the most pressing debates in contemporary Germany. The German Patient will be essential reading for anyone interested in mass death, genocide, and memory." ---Paul Lerner, University of Southern California

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German Question/Jewish Question

Revolutionary Antisemitism in Germany from Kant to Wagner

Paul Lawrence Rose

In this compelling narrative of antisemitism in German thought, Paul Rose proposes a fresh view of the topic. Beginning with an examination of the attitudes of Martin Luther, he challenges distinctions between theologically derived (medieval) and secular, "racial" (modern) antisemitism, arguing that there is an unbroken chain of antisemitic feeling between the two periods.

Originally published in 1992.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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German Studies Review

Vol. 35 (2012) through current issue

German Studies Review (GSR) is the scholarly journal of the German Studies Association (GSA), the world’s largest academic association devoted to the interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary study of the German-speaking countries. Recent issues have covered topics from Alexander von Humboldt and postcolonial theory to Krupp housing estates in the Ruhr valley to the popularity of German gangsta rap. A peer-reviewed journal, GSR includes articles and book reviews on the history, literature, culture, and politics of the German-speaking areas of Europe encompassing primarily, but not exclusively, Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

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German Writing, American Reading

Women and the Import of Fiction, 1866-1917

In postbellum America, publishers vigorously reprinted books that were foreign in origin, and Americans thus read internationally even at a moment of national consolidation. A subset of Americans’ international reading—nearly 100 original texts, approximately 180 American translations, more than 1,000 editions and reprint editions, and hundreds of thousands of books strong—comprised popular fiction written by German women and translated by American women. German Writing, American Reading: Women and the Import of Fiction, 1866–1917 by Lynne Tatlock examines the genesis and circulation in America of this hybrid product over four decades and beyond. These entertaining novels came to the consumer altered by processes of creative adaptation and acculturation that occurred in the United States as a result of translation, marketing, publication, and widespread reading over forty years. These processes in turn de-centered and disrupted the national while still transferring certain elements of German national culture. Most of all, this mass translation of German fiction by American women trafficked in happy endings that promised American readers that their fondest wishes for adventure, drama, and bliss within domesticity and their hope for the real power of love, virtue, and sentiment could be pleasurably realized in an imagined and quaintly old-fashioned Germany—even if only in the time it took to read a novel.

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The Germans and the East

edited by Charles W. Ingrao and Franz Szabo

This volume provides an historical overview of the relationship between Germany, German speakers, and successive waves of German colonists with their eastern neighbors over the period from the Middle Ages to the present. The collection of essays by 28 leading experts includes the most recent scholarship together with fresh perspectives on the subject.

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Germany 1945

Views of War and Violence

Dagmar Barnouw

Photographers from the U.S. Army's Signal Corps were with the troops that drove back Hitler's troops and occupied Germany at the end of WWII. Soon photos of death camps and starving POWs shocked the home front, providing ample evidence of Nazi brutality. Yet did the faces of the defeated Germans show remorse? The victors saw only arrogance, servility, and the resentment of a population thoroughly brainwashed by the Nazis. In fact, argues Dagmar Barnouw, the photographs from this period tell a more complex story and hold many clues for a better understanding of the recent German past.

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