Our Summer issue features three articles on key aspects of German
politics and society. Belinda Cooper analyzes yet another angle of the
thorny Stasi problem, in this case the role and presence of women
in the Stasi. Placing her discussion in the larger context of women
in East Germany, Cooper has fashioned a nuanced, meticulously
researched argument about an issue that remains pertinent in the
debate on Germany, women, unification, and the country’s complex
past. John Bendix and Niklaus Steiner provide a new epistemological
prism for the evaluation of Germany’s much discussed problem of
political asylum. They address this difficult topic in the context of
existing approaches in comparative politics and international relations,
featuring the notion of “national interest” in their presentation.
Ludger Helms then offers a fascinating study of an often-neglected
institution of German politics: that of the federal presidency since
1949. After a careful reading of this article, it is evident that the German
presidency deserves more attention in the future research
agenda of political scientists than it has garnered in the past.
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