Hannah Arendt and Alexander and Margarete Mitscherlich produced influential accounts of the postwar West-German population's silence or inarticuleteness. The Mitscherlichs claimed that this silence was symptomatic of a blocked process of mourning; Arendt saw it as a legacy of brutal totalitarian rule. However, both viewed the rapid economic recovery as evidence of the German inability to engage in discursively mediated therapeutic and political processes. Frantic busyness was a form of silence. This paper presents a critical reassessment of these approaches. By drawing on Albert Hirschman's theory of exit and voice, it argues that economic activity possesses a communicative dimension. The alleged retreat from politics is not a symptom of muteness but rather indicates people's preference for an alternative mode of communication. Arendt and the Mitscherlich may be right in assuming a correlation between the postwar economic recovery and ostensible political apathy, but lack the conceptual means to clarify the relationship.
Myra Marx Ferree, Hanno Balz, John Bendix, Meredith Heiser-Duron, Jeffrey Luppes, Stephen Milder, and Randall Newnham
he should include Fukuyama’s reactions over the last two decades to attacks on his thesis. Fukuyama simply serves as a foil for an attack on capitalism. Bednarz’s next theoretical analysis is more accurate. After discussing Albert O. Hirschman’s
Protest and Voting in East Germany’s Revolution, 1989-1990
neighbor. The radical impulse of the revolution’s early days was irretrievably lost. Notes 1 For some of the best known contributions see Albert O. Hirschman, “Exit, Voice, and the Fate of the German Democratic Republic: An Essay in Conceptual
Some Comparisons on his Vichy Years with My Family Story
Jeremy Adelman, Wordly Philospher: The Odyssey of Albert O. Hirschman (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2015); Varian Fry, Surrender on Demand (Boulder: Johnson Books, 1997, 1945). 31 Ira Katznelson, Fear Itself: The New Deal and the Origins of