The Germans: A People at the Crossroads

David Marsh, Author St. Martin's Press $22.95 (386p) ISBN 978-0-312-05095-5
Marsh, Bonn correspondent for the Financial Times of London, here takes an expert look at what's happening in the two Germanys in light of the recent changes in East-West relations. This is not so much a ``people'' book as a clarifying review of German attitudes, trends and issues. The author briefly discusses the Teutonic sense of humor, driving habits, their behavior as tourists and other narrowly focused topics of the sort; but the main sections of the book are devoted to the German perspective on the deteriorating environment, the influx to their nation of foreign workers, the decline of the birth rate, relations between politics and the media, and above all, reunification. Recent Soviet policies, according to Marsh, are eroding traditional West German anti-Communism; the Federal Republic now views the Soviets more as partners than as a military threat. He maintains that West Germany's desire for protection offered by U.S. defensive forces is declining, along with America's ability to pay for it. Marsh also claims that the Germans are tiring of apologizing for the Nazis, and he points out that anti-Semitism lives on in Germany, ``despite the lack of Jews.'' A perceptive analysis of a country that has again become ``the epicenter of a continent in transition.'' (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1990
Release date: 10/01/1990
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