The Politics of Memory in Postwar Europe

ISBN 13: 9780822338178

The Politics of Memory in Postwar Europe

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9780822338178: The Politics of Memory in Postwar Europe

For sixty years, different groups in Europe have put forth interpretations of World War II and their respective countries’ roles in it consistent with their own political and psychological needs. The conflict over the past has played out in diverse arenas, including film, memoirs, court cases, and textbooks. It has had profound implications for democratization and relations between neighboring countries. This collection provides a comparative case study of how memories of World War II have been constructed and revised in seven European nations: France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Italy, and the USSR (Russia). The contributors include scholars of history, literature, political science, psychology, and sociology. Country by country, they bring to the fore the specifics of each nation’s postwar memories in essays commissioned especially for this volume. The use of similar analytical categories facilitates comparisons.

An extensive introduction contains reflections on the significance of Europeans’ memories of World War II and a conclusion provides an analysis of the implications of the contributors’ findings for memory studies. These two pieces tease out some of the findings common to all seven countries: for instance, in each nation, the decade and a half between the late 1960s and the mid-1980s was the period of most profound change in the politics of memory. At the same time, the contributors demonstrate that Europeans understand World War II primarily through national frames of reference, which are surprisingly varied. Memories of the war have important ramifications for the democratization of Central and Eastern Europe and the consolidation of the European Union. This volume clarifies how those memories are formed and institutionalized.

Contributors. Claudio Fogu, Richard J. Golsan, Wulf Kansteiner, Richard Ned Lebow, Regula Ludi, Annamaria Orla-Bukowska, Heidemarie Uhl, Thomas C. Wolfe

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From the Back Cover:

"This is not the first collaborative volume on post-World War II memory in Europe to appear in recent years, but it is the best and most important. Two qualities that set it apart are the integration of excellent historical writing with a stimulating social-science framework and the broadly humanistic cultural sensibilities embodied in the country-specific chapters. The book will be read with benefit by students of history and political psychology, as well as by those interested in the comparative politics of the past."--Martin O. Heisler, University of Maryland

About the Author:

Richard Ned Lebow is James O. Freedman Presidential Professor of Government at Dartmouth College. He is the author of many books, including The Tragic Vision of Politics: Ethics, Interests, and Orders.

Wulf Kansteiner is Associate Professor of History and Judaic Studies at Binghamton University. He is the author of In Pursuit of German Memory: History, Television, and Politics after Auschwitz.

Claudio Fogu teaches in the French and Italian Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the author of The Historic Imaginary: Politics of History in Fascist Italy.

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Verlag: Duke University Press Sep 2006 (2006)
ISBN 10: 0822338173 ISBN 13: 9780822338178
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Buchbeschreibung Duke University Press Sep 2006, 2006. Taschenbuch. Buchzustand: Neu. Neuware - Considers intersection between history and memory in seven European countries with emphasis on social narratives that have emerged surrounding World War II and implications of that process for the development of democracy. 384 pp. Englisch. Artikel-Nr. 9780822338178

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