|About the Book|
Following the defeat of the Third Reich in 1945, Germany has experienced recurring turmoil and reinvention. In this book Michael Gehler explores the political path Germany has taken since the Yalta Conference, which split post-war Germany into fourMoreFollowing the defeat of the Third Reich in 1945, Germany has experienced recurring turmoil and reinvention. In this book Michael Gehler explores the political path Germany has taken since the Yalta Conference, which split post-war Germany into four zones, one each controlled by the Soviets, Americans, French and British. What followed was a tug of war between Eastern and Western powers concerning their influence on the development of the future Germany. In 1949 Germany was officially split into the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic. They became two separate states with opposed political systems, different economies and societies, splitting not only families but also the entire German people ideologically and - with the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961 - physically too.Both states contributed to the division of Central Europe and bloc building in East and West. Change began through rapprochement in the years of détente and normalization in the 1970s. But when the Wall came down in 1989 and Germany was reunified, its problems were far from over: even today, the effects of the division are still evident and the different governments have struggled to implement reforms.Gehlers ambitious study of Germany since 1945 is particularly valuable for his assessment of our own times, as he shows how the three Germanies (Bonn, Pankow and todays Berlin Republic) sought to establish governments that could create stable states. This book is written from an independent perspective, observing the different Germanies against the background of the Cold War, European integration and international relations. It will appeal to anyone interested in post-war policy, diplomacy and statecraft, modern history, and the future of Germany.