Oppression And Scarcity: The History And Institutional Structure Of The Marxist-leninist Government…

Hardcover | January 31, 2006

byPeter W. Sperlich

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Imagine being forced to adopt an ideology that strips you of your political rights and plunges you into a life of despair and unending shortages. After the Second World War, the people of East Germany endured just such an appalling fate when socialism was forced upon them. Examining the effects of an oppressive and economically incompetent system, Sperlich presents a systematic review of post-war German history, with an emphasis on the founding of a communist state on German soil: the German Democratic Republic. He traces the imposition of communist rule, discussing the suppression of free elections and opposition to the infliction of a dictatorial one-party regime. He also explains what life was like for the East Germans who suffered under the restraints of socialism. The book ends with Sperlich's account of the "peaceful revolution" of 1989, which led to the reunification of the two German states. In considering the daily existence of the oppressed state of East Germany, Sperlich considers the failures of a massively unproductive "planned economy" (shored up by West German aid), the manipulation of public opinion and public discourse, the cult of personality, the lack of personal and social freedoms, and other blights on human dignity and happiness.

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Imagine being forced to adopt an ideology that strips you of your political rights and plunges you into a life of despair and unending shortages. After the Second World War, the people of East Germany endured just such an appalling fate when socialism was forced upon them. Examining the effects of an oppressive and economically incompe...

Format:HardcoverDimensions:303 pages, 9.28 × 6.1 × 1.11 inPublished:January 31, 2006Publisher:Praeger PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0275975657

ISBN - 13:9780275975654

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"According to the American newsreels and TV shows, life under Marxist-Leninist governments was composed primarily of wearing drab clothing, standing in long lines for survival rations, and being thrown into gulags at various points in the life-cycle. In this second volume in his series, Sperlich replaces these rather simple-minded perceptions with the realities and practicalities of life in East Germany before reunification. He explains how Germany was partitioned and how allied policies moved from the four-zone to the two-state systems, the beginnings of government structure, politics in terms of the party, the state and citizenship, reforms and failure in economics due to rigidity, and the influence of public opinion and public discourse. He closes with reflections on life under socialism, including the practice of religion, cultural life, and how the customer is always wrong, and closes with an analysis of the end of the socialist experiment."-Reference & Research Book News