Germany on the Drawing Board

Kay Schiller and Christopher Young

in The 1972 Munich Olympics and the Making of Modern Germany

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2010 | ISBN: 9780520262133
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520947580 | DOI:
Germany on the Drawing Board

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This chapter begins by discussing how the young republic devoted itself to a project of conscious and deliberate modernization that clearly broke with the National Socialist past. It then notes that Germany's image in 1958 was largely constructed by representatives of the Deutscher Werkbund, an association of artists, architects, industrialists, and politicians founded in 1907 and re-established in 1950 to promote the aesthetic quality of German products, economic recovery, and cultural reform. Next, it explains that while the National Socialists had openly embraced modernist design, in the postwar era its representatives successfully reinvented themselves in rejection of Nazi “blood and soil”. It also highlights the fact that modernist design was therefore freer than almost any other form of intellectual expression to transform the “wreckage of the past into a brave new world of post-fascist modernity”.

Keywords: Deutscher Werkbund; Germany; National Socialist; postwar era; Nazi; post-fascist modernity; modernization

Chapter.  16390 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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