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Ecologies of Socialisms

Germany, Nature, and the Left in History, Politics, and Culture


Edited By Sabine Mödersheim, Scott Moranda and Eli Rubin

This volume explores the complex webs of interaction between the environmental movement, socialism, and the «natural» environment in Germany, and beyond, in the twentieth century. There has long been a divide between the environmental, or «green,» movement and socialist movements in Germany, a divide that has expressed itself in scholarship and intellectual discourse. And yet, upon closer inspection, the split between «red» and «green» is not as clear as it might at first seem. Indeed, little about the interaction between socialism and environmentalism, or socialism and the environment, fits into a neat binary. In a way, the discourses, positions, and policies
that structure the interactions between environmentalism, nature, and socialism in German history and culture can be said to constitute a kind of ecology – a complex and interdependent web of relations, which can appear as antagonisms, but which can also contain deeper, less immediately visible, interdependencies. Ecologies of Socialisms attempts to combine the work of scholars from a wide range of disciplines (history, literature, German/Austrian studies, philosophy, geography) in order to contribute to a better and more nuanced understanding of how «green» and «red» have clashed and also merged in German history and culture.
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List of Figures



Figure 1: From article in science journal Urania. The caption reads: “2.5 Millions of tons of sulfur escape every year from the chimneys in our Republic. Through the exposure to sulfurous gases, forests in the Ore Mountains will soon die.”

Figure 2: “People Live Here” from the Ostsee Zeitung, Spring 1990.

Figure 3: The “Animals’ Press Conference” at the occupation of the Hainburger Au.

Figure 4: Palm Alley as part of the GDR’s master plan for the reconstruction of Vinh. Courtesy of the German Federal Archives.

Figure 5: Area C of the housing estate. Trees are represented by circles. Courtesy of the German Federal Archives.

Figure 6: Bird’s eye view of blocks C2, C3 and C4 from neighboring high-rise, 2012. Photo by the author.

Figure 7: Multifunctional, communal green space used for parking bikes, grazing, gardening, drying clothes and playing badminton (a team of grandmothers in the background), 2015. Photo by the author.←vii | viii→ ←viii | ix→

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