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48 Laws of Power
Leaders Eat Last
The Making of the German Post-War Economy
Political Communication and Public Reception of the Social Market Economy After World War Two610
The years following the end of World War II in Germany were a significant period of change and upheaval. This book on the economic reconstruction of post-war West Germany traces the development of economic and socio-political ideas, and their gradual absorption by mainstream politicians, officials and the general public during the period of transition between 1945 and 1949. In the aftermath of World War II, several German think-tanks, political parties and individuals gave impulse to and then shaped the development of a viable socio-political and economic model between the extremes of laissez-faire capitalism and the collectivist planned economy. In their endeavours to bring into effect their particular economic ideas - often diametrically opposed to one another - the parties of left and right stimulated not only academic and political debate, but also public debate about the political and economic reconstruction of occupied post-war Germany. While all the various neo-liberal approaches assigned to the people sovereign and decisive status in the institutional economic order, and recognised the interdependence of politics, economics and the public, one particular school of economic thought outpaced the others in communicating a model of coordinated economic and social policy, namely the Social Market Economy. Christian Glossner here investigates whether or not it was primarily the subtlety of the political campaign for this model that led to its implementation by the then Economic Council and eventual validation by the German electorate. The programmes published by the principal academic and political groups of the time and the practical day-to-day decisions of the first parliament in post-war Germany are analysed with reference to popular preferences. By examining both the formative involvement of German parties in post-war reconstruction and the role of the public during the process of economic liberalisation, this book provides explanations for why the Social Market Economy prevailed as the socio-political and economic model for the Federal Republic of Germany. It will be of interest to scholars of German, economic and twentieth-century history.
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'Christian Glossner analyses convincingly how West Germany came to adopt an economic recovery programme leading to the 'economic miracle' of the 1950s. He traces the struggle of ideas and concepts between economic theoreticians and politicians in an exemplary way. Glossner's work shows how a country suffering heavily from the destructions of the war was able to opt for the successful 'Social Market Economy'. This is a groundbreaking contribution to the understanding of the wider post-war European recovery which laid the foundation for political stability on the continent.' Hartmut Pogge von Strandmann, Professor of History, University College, University of Oxford [This book] is a significant contribution to the existing literature on the Social Market Economy.' Keith Tribe, Visiting Senior Research Fellow, Department of History, University of Sussex 'The book's strength is its extensive use of German public and private archival papers and contemporary published periodicals, to examine how various economic models were articulated by the CDU/CSU, SPD and KPD and their presentation to the wider German public. It highlights the importance and effectiveness of the political campaign that led the Soziale Marktwirtschaft to be adopted as a winning political programme.' Patricia Clavin, Fellow and Tutor in History, Jesus College, University of Oxford
Christian L. Glossner is Teaching Fellow and Assistant Lecturer in Political Economy and European History at the University of Oxford. He previously held a Europaeum Research Fellowship at the Institut Universitaire de Hautes Etudes Internationales (HEI) in Geneva and worked for the Directorate-General for Economic and Financial Affairs (ECFIN) of the European Commission in Brussels. He is a graduate from the Universite de Fribourg as well as the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and received his D.Phil. on economic theory and political history from the University of Oxford.
Introduction Part I: Conception and Communication Chapter 1: Academic Concepts between Neo-Liberalism and Neo-Socialism 1.1. The Freiburg Circles and Neo-Liberalism 1.2. The Freiburg School and Ordo-Liberalism 1.3. The Cologne School and Social Market Economics Chapter 2: Political Considerations between Programmatic Intention and Pragmatic Imperative 2.1. The Social Democratic Party and Liberal Socialism 2.2. The Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union and Social Liberalism Part II: Politics and Public Opinion Chapter 3: 1945/1946 - Stupor and Search for Direction Chapter 4: 1947 - Disillusion and Disappointment Chapter 5: 1948 - Aspiration and Apprehension Chapter 6: 1949 - Contentment and Confidence Conclusion