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From Monuments to TracesArtifacts of German Memory, 1870-1990$
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Rudy Koshar

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780520217683

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520217683.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
From Monuments to Traces

Rudy Koshar

University of California Press

This book discusses the long view of German memory from 1871, when Germany became a nation state, to 1990, when Cold War disunity was overcome and national integrity reestablished, and addresses certain features of Germany's engagement with the past, maintaining that German memory is marked by recurring themes and symbols. Monuments and historical artifacts have proven to be enduring and tangible symbols of cultural continuity. The book examines the triadic relationship between humans, landmarks, and cultural meanings, focusing on historical sites or memory landscapes, and the collective meanings represented by monuments and other physical sites. It describes how distinct layers of memory landscape have come about, and how evolving symbols and themes have crystallized around them.

Keywords:   Germany, Cold War, German memory, monuments, landmarks, cultural meanings, memory landscape

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