Marsh, Bonn correspondent for the Financial Times of London, here takes an expert look at what's happening in the two Germanys in light of the recent changes in East-West relations. This is not so much a ``people'' book as a clarifying review of German attitudes, trends and issues. The author briefly discusses the Teutonic sense of humor, driving habits, their behavior as tourists and other narrowly focused topics of the sort; but the main sections of the book are devoted to the German perspective on the deteriorating environment, the influx to their nation of foreign workers, the decline of the birth rate, relations between politics and the media, and above all, reunification. Recent Soviet policies, according to Marsh, are eroding traditional West German anti-Communism; the Federal Republic now views the Soviets more as partners than as a military threat. He maintains that West Germany's desire for protection offered by U.S. defensive forces is declining, along with America's ability to pay for it. Marsh also claims that the Germans are tiring of apologizing for the Nazis, and he points out that anti-Semitism lives on in Germany, ``despite the lack of Jews.'' A perceptive analysis of a country that has again become ``the epicenter of a continent in transition.'' (Oct.)
This timely book, first published in Great Britain in 1989, has been effectively updated to incorporate the demise of the Berlin Wall, the East German elections of March 1990, and the movement toward reunification. Marsh (Bonn correspondent for London's Financial Times ) seeks to ``explore the consequences of German unity on a continent in transition.'' He analyzes the unique and paradoxical features of the German character, examines the legacies of Nazism, and the often fragile nature of West Germany's ``uncertain democracy,'' achieving a historical perspective through journalistic case studies and profiles of representative Germans. He assesses the impact of Allied occupation, the painful postwar relationship with the Jews, the ``economic miracle'' of West Germany, the gradual political changes in East Germany, and the influential opinion on reunification. Extensive notes to the text and a solid bibliography are provided. This impressive book will become a standard source book on modern Germany. Highly recommended for public and academic libraries.-- Thomas A. Karel, Franklin & Marshall Coll. Lib., Lancaster, Pa.