Foreign Front: Third World Politics in Sixties West Germany (Radical Perspectives)

Foreign Front: Third World Politics in Sixties West Germany (Radical Perspectives)

Quinn Slobodian

Language: English

Pages: 320

ISBN: 0822351846

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Foreign Front: Third World Politics in Sixties West Germany (Radical Perspectives)

Quinn Slobodian

Language: English

Pages: 320

ISBN: 0822351846

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


It is often asserted that West German New Leftists "discovered the Third World" in the pivotal decade of the 1960s. Quinn Slobodian upsets that storyline by beginning with individuals from the Third World themselves: students from Africa, Asia, and Latin America who arrived on West German campuses in large numbers in the early 1960s. They were the first to mobilize German youth in protest against acts of state violence and injustice perpetrated beyond Europe and North America. The activism of the foreign students served as a model for West German students, catalyzing social movements and influencing modes of opposition to the Vietnam War. In turn, the West Germans offered the international students solidarity and safe spaces for their dissident engagements. This collaboration helped the West German students to develop a more nuanced, empathetic understanding of the Third World, not just as a site of suffering, poverty, and violence, but also as the home of politicized individuals with the capacity and will to speak in their own names.

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letter to the editor, Der Spiegel, January 10, 1962, 8. 105. Habermas, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, 163, originally published as Habermas, Strukturwandel der Öffentlichkeit. 106. Baethge and Friedrich, “Die außerparlamentarische Öffentlichkeit vor den Wahlen,” 3. 107. Kunzelmann, Leisten Sie keinen Widerstand!, 58. 108. Uncaptioned photograph, APOA. Ausstellung 2. Juni portfolio. 109. Schmierer, “Der Zauber des großen Augenblicks,” 119. 110. Fahlenbrach,

allowed selectivity about which foreigners’ demonstrations to permit, allowing, in their example, demonstrations “in the fight against communism” but not others.160 In a speech on the political rights of foreigners in 1967, Gerhard Heuer of the Interior Ministry explained how acts of administration interacted with the structures of law. Heuer used the example of an assassination threat on the shah by Iranian dissidents: “Imagine, please, what would happen if German authorities did not take

the West threatened to complicate the scope of its activity, which had been concerned until that point primarily with questions of religion, secularism, and civic freedom. By 1968, events in the Third World had radicalized opinion within the HU itself as, “prompted by the Vietnam War,” members began to discuss how their organization could acknowledge the fact that “one cannot understand human rights as nationally limited,” but the student group led the way.68 The SPD blocked its subsidiary

renamed the Dziga Vertov Academy in late May 1968. In two films about the Vietnam War made at the DFFB, Harun Farocki, one of the academy’s most active students, engaged directly with questions of the political use and responsibility of the image. Farocki’s ethnicity and life history straddled the First World and the Third World. He was born in in 1944 in the territory of the Sudetenland annexed by the Third Reich (Sudetengau) to Abdul Qudus Faroqhi, an Indian doctor trained in Germany, and a

was also becoming a far more reliable conduit to the attention of the working class than the direct factory visit.176 19. and 20. Stills from Harun Farocki’s film Inextinguishable Fire (1969). Courtesy of Harun Farocki Filmproduktion. The politics of gore relate to recent scholarly discussions about how New Leftists operated within a media landscape dominated increasingly by images rather than the spoken or written word.177 Social scientists and historians have observed that activists, though

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