After presenting a brief summary of the events leading up to the German Autumn, this article offers a close analysis of media responses in major German newspapers and magazines in the months following these violent and confusing political developments. It compares these responses to reports in January 1980, where the events of the late 1970s serve as a catalyst for fears of global change. Media articulate these fears about the stability and identity of the West German nation state in increasingly vague and generalized terms and relate them to a global situation that is "out of control." The discussions in this article suggest that these expressed fears reveal tensions, interruptions, and gaps in the conservative fantasy of the secure and prosperous Western nation state.
Ruff, Mark Edward. The Wayward Flock: Catholic Youth in Postwar West Germany, 1945-1965 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2005)
McDougall, Alan. Youth Politics in East Germany: The Free German Youth Movement 1946-1968 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2004)
Space, Perspective, and Critical Research Skills
This article investigates the potential of one of the most contested and debated spaces of German Studies research, the Postdamer Platz in Berlin, as an interactive "textbook." By employing the notion of "play" the areas around the commercialized Postdamer Platz can be "read" and explored as contradictory, chaotic, messy, and haunted by ghosts of the past, despite—or possibly amplified by—the newly constructed, glossy surfaces of global media and capitalism that form a center for the German capital. I consider the subversive possibilities as well as the limits of this playful approach to teaching, exploring, and learning about commercialized urban centers in the twenty-first century.
The Body Politics of Popfeminist Musical Performances in the Twenty-first Century
This article offers a theorization of the politics of politically inspired musical performances in the twenty-first century. The two examples, Peaches’ “Dick in the Air” and Rose McGowan’s “rm486,” both released in fall 2015, offer two very different approaches to contemporary feminist and popfeminist body politics. These songs with their accompanying video and multimedia releases, offer the temporal and auditory frame for reflections about how gendered and racialized bodies are impacted by their surroundings and how, in turn, we impact these surroundings, to the local and the global, to neoliberalism and its discontents. These performances are not acts of provocation, but suggest ways to imagine social futures by creating spaces for relations, shared response, and political intervention.