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Germany in Transit

Germany in Transit: Nation and Migration, 1955-2005

DENIZ GÖKTÜRK
DAVID GRAMLING
ANTON KAES
Copyright Date: 2007
Edition: 1
Pages: 613
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/j.ctt1pnjzd
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  • Book Info
    Germany in Transit
    Book Description:

    How does migration change a nation?Germany in Transitis the first sourcebook to illuminate the country's transition into a multiethnic society-from the arrival of the first guest workers in the mid-1950s to the most recent reforms in immigration and citizenship law. The book charts the highly contentious debates about migrant labor, human rights, multiculturalism, and globalization that have unfolded in Germany over the past fifty years-debates that resonate far beyond national borders. This cultural history in documents offers a rich archive for the comparative study of modern Germany against the backdrop of European integration, transnational migration, and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Divided into eleven thematic chapters,Germany in Transitincludes 200 original texts in English translation, as well as a historical introduction, chronology, glossary, bibliography, and filmography.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-94001-7
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Documents
    (pp. vii-xiv)
  4. List of Illustrations
    (pp. xv-xvi)
  5. PREFACE
    (pp. xvii-xx)
  6. List of Abbreviations
    (pp. xxi-xxii)
  7. INTRODUCTION: A GERMAN DREAM?
    (pp. 1-20)

    Picture the following scene: Several hundred immigrants wearing native garb from their homeland line up on a stage. They march through a huge “melting pot” and, after a quick change of clothes, emerge as Americans in workers’ uniforms. This spectacle was Henry Ford’s way of celebrating the mandatory Americanization of his immigrant workforce in 1908. Since then, the mythic ideal of an American melting pot has undergone a century of revision and critique, but the collective swearing-in ceremony that transforms immigrants into American citizens continues to this day. Drawn by the promise of the American Dream, more than 100 million...

  8. 1 WORKING GUESTS: GASTARBEITER AND GREEN CARD HOLDERS
    (pp. 21-64)

    We begin this volume with documents tracing the turbulent itinerary of foreign labor recruitment in West Germany from the postwar era to the present. Though Italian seasonal workers had been employed in the southwestern province of Baden-Württemberg since 1952, recruitment on the federal level began in January 1956. Our first text is a 1955 contract between Italy and West Germany “in the spirit of European solidarity” that would place Italian laborers for a maximum term of nine months. Members of the center-left Social Democratic Party objected to the program, claiming that the government should reduce domestic unemployment before hiring foreign...

  9. 2 OUR SOCIALIST FRIENDS: FOREIGNERS IN EAST GERMANY
    (pp. 65-104)

    The Division of Germany into two states in 1949 was a major catalyst for the guest-worker programs of the 1950s, both in the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic. In West Germany during the “Economic Miracle” years, the labor shortage was most acute in the regions bordering on the East, where militarization and political uncertainty had scattered thousands of families into the interior of the Allied zones. Meanwhile, East Germany was losing millions of its citizens to the West, and it continued to suffer crippling labor droughts even 10 years after the Berlin Wall was erected in...

  10. 3 IS THE BOAT FULL? XENOPHOBIA, RACISM, AND VIOLENCE
    (pp. 105-148)

    Although the years directly following reunification gripped Germany in a cycle of high-profile racist attacks—followed by investigations, candlelight vigils, human chains, trials, mourning, coalition building, and fear—the German debate on anti-immigrant violence had begun at least 20 years before. This chapter presents a historical account of the interplay between immigration policy and racist violence.

    We begin with a cover story from the mainstream magazineDer Spiegel,published four months before West Germany’s November 1973 moratorium on foreign-labor recruitment. The article sets an alarmist tone that would characterize public sentiment on immigration throughout the decade—giving voice to the...

  11. 4 WHAT IS A GERMAN? LEGISLATING NATIONAL IDENTITY
    (pp. 149-192)

    When Mahmut Erdem, the protagonist of Christian Wernicke’s article “The Long Road to the German Passport,” obtained West German citizenship in 1989, he had fulfilled all of the criteria that nineteenth-century applicants had to demonstrate: unequivocal moral character, solvency and fastidious financial planning, exemption from foreign military service, and release from previous citizenship. Like the new Prussian citizens of the early nineteenth century, Erdem received his confirmation of citizenship not from a centralized federal office but from a local agent of the province of Braunschweig. Even for a highly educated applicant like Erdem, the naturalization process was ambiguous, arbitrary, and...

  12. 5 RELIGION AND DIASPORA: MUSLIMS, JEWS, AND CHRISTIANS
    (pp. 193-240)

    This Chapter Explores religious affiliation as a crucial force in migrant community building and for the cohesion of the modern nation-state. The September 11, 2001, attacks on New York City’s World Trade Center, which were partially planned in Hamburg, incited an extensive debate about Islamist political organizations in German cities. September 11 also encouraged discussions among Muslims in Germany about the possibilities of a distinctly European Islam. Muslim scholar Bassam Tibi in “Between the Worlds” (2002) and social historian Hans-Ulrich Wehler in “Muslims Cannot Be Integrated” (2002) illustrate the acute tensions that inform German debates about faith and civic identity....

  13. 6 PROMOTING DIVERSITY: INSTITUTIONS OF MULTICULTURALISM
    (pp. 241-284)

    Among The Principal early catalysts for immigration reform in the 1970s were the Deutsche Städtetag, or the German Council of Municipalities, and the German Caritas Alliance. These groups funded and analyzed statistical research about immigrants’ living conditions, legal disenfranchisement, and socioeconomic inequities. Publications by the Städtetag, like the 1973 pamphlet opening this chapter, were among the first institutional attempts to advocate for guest workers as “fellow citizens” who had chosen Germany as their new homeland. Even before the 1973 moratorium on recruitment, the Städtetag took a strong research-supported stance refuting widespread notions of disproportionately high criminality among immigrants.

    In 1978,...

  14. 7 AN IMMIGRATION COUNTRY? THE LIMITS OF CULTURE
    (pp. 285-330)

    This Chapter Considers how immigration has reshaped the basic idea of Germany as a nation-state since 1961. The texts included here pose and reformulate inquiries about Germany’s self-concept on the global stage: Is Germany an immigration country or an ethno-national community? As Theo Sommer points out, West Germans in 1985 were only slightly less than unanimous in their opposition to further immigration. Because individual states, not the federal government, were responsible for granting and regulating residency for foreign nationals, many West German cities considered imposing “one-in one-out” quotas for Turks and other guest-worker residents.

    Immigration had, however, become a feature...

  15. 8 LIVING IN TWO WORLDS? DOMESTIC SPACE, FAMILY,AND COMMUNITY
    (pp. 331-382)

    The Texts in this Chapter attempt to offer an impressionistic engagement with the “lifeworld” of migration: living rooms, bedrooms, schools, apartment complexes, rental units, deportation holding facilities, nursing homes, and makeshift encampments. A federal statute regulating accommodations for guest workers opens this chapter, followed by a 1974 interview with New German Cinema director Rainer Werner Fassbinder, in which he addresses the dilemma of representing migrant workers in his films. A 1977 article inDer Spiegelon “guest-worker children”—or children of recruited laborers—interviewed teenagers about their employment, their educational experiences, and the daily presence of discrimination in their lives....

  16. 9 WRITING BACK: LITERATURE AND MULTILINGUALISM
    (pp. 383-424)

    Our Ninth Chapter Focuses on the phenomenon that Leslie A. Adelson (see chapter 6) refers to as the “literary elephant in the room”: transnational literature beyond autobiography and ethnic categorization. Rather than presenting a representative selection of immigrant fiction in Germany, the texts in this chapter shore up the interpenetrating fields of German and transnational literature: publishing and recruitment practices, awards and competitions, ironic appropriations and resignifications, trends and movements. The collection ranges from poetic critiques of Orientalism (Zafer Şenocak) to analyses of “migrant-literature” niche marketing (Klaus Pokatzky), celebratory invocations of the multilingual spirit (Harald Weinrich), and mordant repudiations of...

  17. 10 A TURKISH GERMANY: FILM, MUSIC, AND EVERYDAY LIFE
    (pp. 425-468)

    The Widespread Consumption of kebab and falafel is probably the most ubiquitous sign of the “Orientalization” of Germany. “The Coup of the Billions,” an extract from Eberhard Seidel-Pielen’s 1996 book, subjects the fashionable and inexpensive lunchtime favorite döner kebab to consumer analysis. For Seidel-Pielen, the kebab is an invincible cultural and culinary force, capable of uprooting Germany’s most widespread everyday habits. Yet despite the internationalization of German cuisine, the apolitical “selective incorporation” typical of such culinary multiculturalism holds little sway in larger debates, such as those on citizenship law or media representation.

    In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the...

  18. EPILOGUE: GLOBAL ALREADY?
    (pp. 469-496)

    The Texts in this Epilogue address the friction between global and national forces before and after German reunification. Claus Leggewie’s 1990 essay “The Foreign Self” asks whether a modern democratic society can mature without undergoing a fundamental alienation from itself through immigration. Frank-Olaf Radtke’s 1991 piece “In Praise of In-Difference” questions the relevance of multiculturalism in late modernity. For Radtke, the overwhelming anonymity of the modern public sphere privileges social roles and industrial functions over ethnic or cultural identities. Multiculturalism, in his view, applies communitarian concepts of identity that have been obsolete for over a century.

    Of paramount importance in...

  19. CHRONOLOGY
    (pp. 497-512)
  20. GLOSSARY
    (pp. 513-516)
  21. BIBLIOGRAPHY
    (pp. 517-542)
  22. FILMOGRAPHY
    (pp. 543-552)
  23. INTERNET RESOURCES
    (pp. 553-554)
  24. LIST OF CREDITS
    (pp. 555-560)
  25. INDEX
    (pp. 561-588)
  26. Back Matter
    (pp. 589-591)