Issue 3/2018

Content Overview: English Titles and Abstracts

  • Yossi Goldstein: Why was Peace not Achieved after the Six-Day War?
  • Bastiaan Willems: Aftershocks of Total War: the Post-War Consequences of the Wehrmacht’s Retreat Through East Prussia.
  • Rüdiger Graf: Behaviour Control beyond the Market and Morality. Discussing Environmental Regulation in the Federal Republic of Germany and the USA during the Last Third of the 20th Century.
  • Malte König: “History Can Be Made, Neighbour!” The Renaming of Berlin’s Kochstraße to Rudi-Dutschke-Straße, 2004-2008.
  • Sören Eden / Henry Marx / Ulrike Schulz: Ordinary Administrations? Methodological Considerations on the Relationship between the Individual and Organisations: The Example of the Reich Ministry of Labour, 1919–1945.

Abstracts

Yossi Goldstein, Why was Peace not Achieved after the Six-Day War?

 

Despite expectations among many Israeli citizens and political leaders in the summer of 1967 that the Israel Defence Forces stellar military victory in the recent Arab-Israeli war (the Six-Day War) would quickly bring Arab leaders to the negotiating table to hammer out a post-war peace settlement, the dismissive September 1967 resolutions of the fourth Arab League Summit in Khartoum clearly indicated that this would not be the case. This article considers the ostensive contradiction between the Israeli government’s declared willingness to give up most of the occupied territories in exchange for peace on the one hand, and its concurrent settlement and annexation activities in these territories on the other hand, with an emphasis on the consistency of Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol’s conditions for reaching a settlement with Israel’s Arab adversaries after the war. Based on a comprehensive historical study of the literature and the relevant archival documents from this period, the article highlights the importance of these conditions – which included direct negotiations with the leadership of the Arab countries in question, a non-return to the pre-war borders, and full recognition of the state of Israel by the governments in question – in understanding the logic that underlay Israel’s position at home and in the international arena until Eshkol’s death in 1969.

 


Bastiaan Willems, Aftershocks of Total War: the Post-War Consequences of the Wehrmacht’s Retreat Through East Prussia

 

From the summer of 1945 onward, during the period immediately following the end of hostilities in East Prussia, a large part of its population perished due to the limited availability of food and other basic ressources. The remaining German population was quick to blame the new Soviet authorities; few considered the role of the Wehrmacht in their suffering. Yet, the German units charged with its defence had been in East Prussia for nine months and brought back a mindset that had radicalised on the Eastern Front. The post-war decline of the province’s population, this paper argues, can be largely traced back to the conduct of the retreating German army. The policies developed during its retreat from the Soviet Union could still clearly be distinguished on German territory, and impacted life long after the war had ended.

 


Rüdiger Graf, Behaviour Control beyond the Market and Morality. Discussing Environmental Regulation in the Federal Republic of Germany and the USA during the Last Third of the 20th Century

 

For several years both national governments as well as international organisations are increasingly discussing political management tools which rely on findings of the behavioural sciences. Unlike rules, economic incentives and awareness-raising measures, so-called nudges especially promise gentle, effective and cost-efficient management by exploiting the systematic distortion of human decision-making behaviour. While the current nudging euphoria can mostly be traced back to the rise of behavioural economics since the 1980s, the current article argues that simultaneously discussions of ecological regulation exhibited a similar development. During the 1980s, disappointment that greater environmental awareness did not result in more adequate behaviour towards the environment and the recognition of the limits of economic management instruments led to the rise of “environmental conduct” as an independent category which social and behavioural scientists sought to describe and influence. This simultaneous change of the discourse in both the field of political regulation as well as theoretical reflection is traced back to four factors: the academic success story of the behavioural sciences, the disenchantment with idealised presumptions of rationality and the project of science-driven policy, the change of planning culture as well as the processes of deregulation and marketisation.

 


Malte König, “History Can Be Made, Neighbour!” The Renaming of Berlin’s Kochstraße to Rudi-Dutschke-Straße, 2004-2008

 

In April 2008 the Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg District Office renamed a section of Berlin’s Kochstraße to Rudi-Dutschke-Straße. Originally an initiative of the alternative taz newspaper, the left-wing PDS officially proposed the street name change in December 2004. As the former student leader is not an uncontroversial historical figure, and since the renaming – right outside the Springer company headquarters, founded byconservative journalist Axel Springer – resulted in a crossing of Rudi-Dutschke- and Axel-Springer-Straße, an intensive public debate arose, which did not conclude with the decision of the district council in August 2005. A local referendum requested by the centre-right CDU as well as legal action in Berlin’s courts followed. The present study of a seemingly harmless street sign thus aims to be a contribution to the fields of culture of memory and the politics of history: On the one hand this was a power struggle between the taz newspaper and the Axel Springer concern, on the other hand this was a surrogate debate, which was not just about Dutschke and whether he was ready to resort to violence, but also about the question who is allowed to submit an interpretation of the 1968 social movement.

 


Sören Eden/Henry Marx/Ulrike Schulz, Ordinary Administrations? Methodological Considerations on the Relationship between the Individual and Organisations: The Example of the Reich Ministry of Labour, 1919–1945

 

Currently a number of studies on the Reich Ministries before and after 1945 are being written. All of them are interested in the role of ministerial officials during National Socialism and wish to show their entanglement in Nazi crimes. The connected question regarding the individual “guilt” and “responsibility” of the officials in these ministries is usually not answered very convincingly in these projects when seen through a methodological lens. The article presents a new, productive approach which is founded on the organisational sociology of the studies of Niklas Luhmann and Stefan Kühl. It makes it possible to ask about individual room for manoeuvre in the complex organisational structures of public administration. Using examples from the history of the Reich Ministry of Labour, the article describes how organisations can shape the actions of their members without determining then fully, and how the members can create pressure for organisational structures to change through their actions. With this sociologically informed view on the ministry, the article offers a contribution to the discussion regarding historical research on the role of the administration during the Weimar Republic and National Socialism.

 


 




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