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Twentieth-Century German Political Thought$
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Peter M. R. Stirk

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780748622900

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748622900.001.0001

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Refounding the Democratic Order

Refounding the Democratic Order

(p.135) 5 Refounding the Democratic Order
Twentieth-Century German Political Thought

Peter M. R. Stirk

Edinburgh University Press

The unconditional surrender of Germany and the Allied assumption of full sovereign power raised the question of whether Germany had ceased to exist as a state. After the effective division of Germany, it served as part of the basis for the desire for reunification. Occupation, revelations about the crimes of the Third Reich, and division also inevitably raised questions about the nature of German identity. The political system of the Federal Republic was regulated by a Basic Law, a term chosen to emphasise the provisional character of the west German state. Because of the embodiment of the ideology in the German Democratic Republic, German political thought in this period was affected by the emphasis upon economic reconstruction and the so-called economic miracle of the 1950s.

Keywords:   Germany, sovereign power, Allied powers, Third Reich, Federal Republic, Basic Law, economic reconstruction

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