When the Wall came down: Reactions to German unification

Harold James, Marla Stone

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract

On 3 Ocrober 1990, the division of Germany came to an end. lt had effectively starred forty-five years earlier, after the military defeat of the Nazi dictatorship, with the creation of zones of occupation at the Potsdam conference of July and August 1945. lt had been made more enduring in 1949 with the creation of two separate states, the (western) Federal Republic (FRG) and the (eastern) Democrarie Republic (GOR). The legacy as much of the cold war as of Hitler's war, division had come to represent an apparently permanent feature of Europe's political geography. lt was not simply a German, but also a European partition, and its ending occurred as the direct result of a fundamental shift in the balance of power. The end on 9 November 1989 of the Berlin Wall as a barrier to the movement of people became a symbol, not just of a German Iiberation, but also of the removal of a political and artificial dissection of the continent into East and West. When the Wall disappeared, Germany could reappear, and so could Europe. Germans, Poles, Czechs, and Hungarians could become Europeans, not merely "East Europeans.".

Original languageAmerican English
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages351
ISBN (Electronic)9781315021300
ISBN (Print)9780415905909
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 4 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Arts and Humanities

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