1st Edition

West Germany A Contemporary History

By Michael Balfour Copyright 1982

    First Published in 1982 West Germany presents a new approach to the study of contemporary Germany. The past history of the country is used to explain its present state, since the roots of many of the events of this century can be found as far back as the Middle Ages. In order to understand Germany’s relative backwardness in the nineteenth century, it is vital to have some conception of her medieval history, and likewise the descriptions of the constitutions of 1871 and 1919 help to explain why the Basic Law of 1949 took the form it did.

    The form the book takes is slightly unusual, in that the amount of space devoted to an epoch increases as the present-day approaches, but this is consistent with the aim of the book. This is an important historical document for scholars and researchers of German history and European history.

    Preface 1. From Tribe to National State: The First Reich 2. The Second Reich, 1871- 1918 3. The First Attempt at Democracy, 1918-1933 4. The Third Reich, 1933-1945 5. The Post War Settlement, 1943- 1945 6. Towards Two Germanies, 1945-1948 7. Crisis and Miracle, 1948-1949 8. The German Republics are Founded, 1948-1949 9. Rearmament and the Restoration of Sovereignty, 1949-1955 10. Adenauer’s High Noon, 1955-61 11. The Erhard Interlude, 1961- 1966 12. The Great Coalition, 1966-1969 13. The Brandt Government, 1969-1974 14. The Schmidt Government, 1974-1980 15. A Look Forward Annexe Statistical Appendix Notes Further Reading Index


    Michael Balfour