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Life after Death: Approaches to a Cultural and Social History of Europe During the 1940s and 1950s (Publications of the German Historical Institute)

Life after Death: Approaches to a Cultural and Social History of Europe During the 1940s and 1950s (Publications of the German Historical Institute)

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Cambridge University Press
Edition: Illustrated, 5/5/2003
EAN 9780521804134, ISBN10: 0521804132

Hardcover, 376 pages, 22.9 x 15.2 x 2.5 cm
Language: English
Originally published in English

This collection of essays offers a novel approach to the cultural and social history of Europe after the Second World War. In a shift of perspective, it does not conceive of the impressive economic and political stability of the postwar era as a quasi-natural return to previous patterns of societal development but approaches it as an attempt to establish 'normality' upon the lingering memories of experiencing violence on a hitherto unprecedented scale. It views the relationship of the violence of the 1940s to the apparent 'normality' and stability of the 1950s as a key to understanding the history of post-war Europe. While the history of post-war Germany naturally looms large in this collection, the essays deal with countries across Western and Central Europe, offer comparative perspectives on their subjects, and draw upon a wide range of primary and secondary source material.

Introduction
violence, normality, and the construction of postwar Europe Richard Bessel and Dirk Schumann
1. Post-traumatic stress disorder and World War II
can a psychiatric concept help us understand postwar society? Alice Förster and Birgit Beck
2. Between pain and silence
remembering the victims of violence in Germany after 1949 Sabine Behrenbeck
3. Paths of normalization after the persecution of the Jews
the Netherlands, France, and West Germany in the 1950s Ido De Haan
4. Trauma, memory and motherhood
Germans and Jewish displaced persons in post-Nazi Germany, 1945–9 Atina Grossman
5. Memory and the narrative of rape in Budapest and Vienna in 1945 Andrea Petö
6. 'Going home'
the personal adjustment of British and American servicemen after the war Joanna Bourke
7. Desperately seeking normality
sex and marriage in the wake of war Dagmar Herzog
8. Family life and 'normality' in postwar British culture Pat Thane
9. Continuities and discontinuities of consumer mentality in West Germany in the 1950s Michael Wildt
10. 'Strengthened and purified through ordeal by fire'
ecclesiastical triumphalism in the ruins of Europe Damian van Melis
11. The nationalism of victimhood
selective violence and national grief in western Europe, 1940–60 Pieter Lagrou
12. Italy after fascism
the predicament of dominant narratives Donald Sasson
13. The politics of post-fascist aesthetics
1950s west and east German industrial design Paul Betts
14. Dissonance, normality, and the historical method
why did some Germans think of Tourism after May 8, 1945? Alon Confino.