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What Stories Are Being Told?

Two Case Studies of (Grand) Narratives from and of the German Democratic Republic in Current Oberstufe Textbooks

Elizabeth Priester Steding

Much like history textbooks, literature textbooks produce a grand narrative, telling a nation's story via its literature. This article examines the presentation of literature of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) in upper level secondary school (Oberstufe) textbooks published in Germany in 2009 and 2010. Twenty years after German unification, literature textbooks are largely divided into two groups in accordance with their handling of literature from the failed socialist state: some focus on ideological criticism of the GDR, and some choose to avoid politics as much as possible. Both options result in a simplistic, even reductionist (grand) narrative of GDR literature. Case studies on Christa Wolf and Günter Grass reveal a consistent, positive portrayal of West German literature and a polarized representation of GDR literature.

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Narrating the Second World War

History Textbooks and Nation Building in Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine

Lina Klymenko

, northern Bukovina, and parts of Finland into the Soviet Union and unification of the Soviet people following the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact Reunification of western Belarus with Belarusian SSR and unification of the Belarusian people following the Molotov

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Enis Sulstarova

, the rise of Islam is connected with Arab national unification. In line with their tendency to present the nation-state as the natural evolutionary purpose of all peoples in history, Albanian history textbooks interpret the rise of Islam as a sort of

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Meglio di ieri

Educational Films, National Identity and Citizenship in Italy from 1948 to 1968

Anne Bruch

integration was one of the key objectives of Italian foreign policy from the late 1940s before Italy became the “ceremonial heart of Europe” in 1957. 12 Government action to promote European unification strove to solve four serious national issues: the re

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Textbooks in Periods of Political Transition after the Second World War

Kira Mahamud Angulo and Anna Ascenzi

, instituted in 1967, was not lifted until November 1990. Particularly revealing is the “politicization” of religion found in these textbooks, which can be linked, for example, to the “Arab national unification” as a consequence and a cause of the spread of

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Jasmyn Galley

unification of the men and women through parenthood . At the Wasy Wailerettes’ next game, the men encourage rather than ogle the female players: “Dicky Bird enters with a big sign saying: ‘WASY-FM’ and hangs it proudly up above the microphone stand” (122

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Introduction: World Knowledge and Non-European Space

Nineteenth Century Geography Textbooks and Children’s Books

Andreas Weiß

“greater German” ( großdeutsch ). While the German unification of 1871 reflected the ideals of the propagandists of the “lesser German” solution, the Reich was shaped both by its geographical borders to the east and west and by the issue of the German

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The Concept of Sentimental Boyhood

The Emotional Education of Boys in Mexico during the Early Porfiriato, 1876–1884

Carlos Zúñiga Nieto

youth in the context of political unification in the Porfiriato were legacies of the polarized politics during the intervention wars (1857–1867) and the Reforma laws of the 1850s. The tumultuous, armed insurrections led by Porfirio Díaz had revealed the

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Spatial Relations and the Struggle for Space

Friedrich Ratzel’s Impact on German Education from the Wilhelmine Empire to the Third Reich

Troy Paddock

legitimate heir to the defunct Holy Roman Empire. Thus, the unification of Germany became the fulfillment of an almost primordial yearning, whose seed had long been growing in the Germanic race. To accompany this picture, the textbooks portrayed Germany as an

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Education, Entertainment, and Indoctrination

Educational Film in Interwar China

Kaiyi Li

, the CECS had close ties to the government. Film had already been utilized as a tool for propaganda by the Kuomintang (KMT) in the early 1920s. Even before the nominal unification of China by the KMT in 1927, Li Minwei, the filmmaker appointed by the