This dissertation analyzes competing East and West German Cold War investments in processes of decolonization and responses to anti-imperialist movements in Africa, Asia, and the Americas from the late 1950s to the mid-1970s. It traces debates within and between the two states as they shifted from a focus on African decolonization and the demise of European colonialism beginning in the late 1950s, to an increasing interest by the late 1960s in the role of the United States as a new imperial power. By combining methods of political and cultural history, the dissertation demonstrates the importance of decolonization to a broad range of actors in both Germanys. Indeed, concern about processes of decolonization and anti-imperialist liberation emerged in diplomacy, in political debate and protest, and in mass cultural venues such as the popular press and film. The dissertation shows that these debates were part of larger projects of post-Nazi rehabilitation in which the two Germanys re-envisioned their place within the world in internationalist rather than nationalist, and integrationist rather than imperialist terms.
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