Politics of Memory in Postwar Europe / Edition 1

Politics of Memory in Postwar Europe / Edition 1

by Richard Ned Lebow
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0822338173

ISBN-13: 2900822338177

Pub. Date: 09/20/2006

Publisher: Duke University Press Books


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

Overview


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

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2900822338177
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
09/20/2006
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
384

Table of Contents


Preface     ix
The Memory of Politics in Postwar Europe     1
From Victim Myth to Co-Responsibility Thesis: Nazi Rule, World War II, and the Holocaust in Austrian Memory     40
The Legacy of World War II in France: Mapping the Discourses of Memory     73
Losing the War, Winning the Memory Battle: The Legacy of Nazism, World War II, and the Holocaust in the Federal Republic of Germany     102
Italiani brava gente: The Legacy of Fascist Historical Culture on Italian Politics of Memory     147
New Threads on an Old Loom: National Memory and Social Identity in Postwar and Post-Communist Poland     177
What Is So Special about Switzerland? Wartime Memory as a National Ideology in the Cold War Era     210
Past as Present, Myth, or History? Discourses of Time and the Great Fatherland War     249
The Politics of Memory and the Poetics of History     284
Bibliography     311
Contributors     355
Index     357

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