Journal Article

On Track for West Germany: Turkish ‘Guest-worker’ Rail Transportation to West Germany in the Postwar Period

Jennifer A. Miller

in German History

Volume 30, issue 4, pages 550-573
Published in print December 2012 | ISSN: 0266-3554
Published online November 2012 | e-ISSN: 1477-089X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/gerhis/ghs074
On Track for West Germany: Turkish ‘Guest-worker’ Rail Transportation to West Germany in the Postwar Period

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Guest-worker transportation, the train ride that most workers had to take, created guest-workers long before arrival in West Germany. West German officials, who were self-conscious about the new West German national image in the postwar era in ways scholars have not previously recognized, attempted to provide a smooth transition to West Germany for these new foreign workers. Because West German officials were largely unsuccessful in this, diverse workers formed negative impressions of their future hosts, creating an experience and a chronological phase in the guest-worker narrative that predates arrival in West Germany and continued long after. West German Employment Bureau officials, employers and the guest-workers themselves also offered counter-narratives to the dominant negative perceptions of guest-workers.

Keywords: guest-worker programmes; migration; immigration; postwar Germany; Turkish minority in Germany; train transportation

Journal Article.  14280 words. 

Subjects: European History

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