Contemporary Germany and the Nazi Legacy: Remembrance, by Caroline Pearce (auth.)

By Caroline Pearce (auth.)

This e-book examines quite a number public debates at the Nazi legacy in Germany on account that Schröder's SDP-Green coalition got here to energy in 1998. A relevant subject is the 'dialectic of normality' wherein references to Nazi previous impression upon current normality. The e-book is a precious source for college students of latest German politics, heritage and culture.

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5 million Jews had been killed (Herf 1997: 346). The tendency towards active Vergangenheitsbewiiltigung was countered by those who wished to rebuild a patriotic identity based on a continuous 22 Contemporary Germany and the Nazi Legacy sense of history and national traditions. Wolfrum notes a shift in Geschichtspolitik from the mid-1970s marked by a more conservative approach to national memory and identity. According to this view, the critical engagement with the National Socialist past in the 1960s had led to a disturbed relationship between West Germans and their national history.

Legal, media and political confrontation with the Nazi past was necessitated by the Eichmann trial in Jerusalem (1961),9 the Auschwitz trials in Frankfurt (1963); the Verjiihrungsdebatten (debates on the statute of limitations for Nazi crimes)10 and the establishment in 1958 of the Ludwigsburgbased Central Office of the Judicial Authorities of the Federal States for the Investigation of National Socialist Crimes. Increased information on the war became available, for example with the gradual release of documents on the war on the Eastern Front, and historical research carried out by the Munich Institute for Contemporary History.

Throughout the world there is increasing evidence that the traditional, 'positive' form of state legitimation is evolving into a democratic culture of public justification, which includes remembrance and mourning for the collective injustice committed in the context of one's own history (Dubiel 1999: 290-1). 13 To give some examples, Jacques Chirac has belatedly apologised for the role of the Vichy government in the deportation of French Jews and the Netherlands and Belgium have now recognised the extent of their collaboration with the Nazis.

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