Synopses & Reviews
The nineteenth century witnessed the birth of German nationalism and the unification of Germany as a powerful nation-state. In this era the reading publicand#8217;s obsession with the most destructive and divisive war in its historyand#8212;the Thirty Yearsand#8217; Warand#8212;resurrected old animosities and sparked a violent, century-long debate over the origins and aftermath of the war. The core of this bitter argument was a clash between Protestant and Catholic historians over the cultural criteria determining authentic German identity and the territorial and political form of the future German nation.and#160;This groundbreaking study of modern Germanyand#8217;s morbid fascination with the war explores the ideological uses of history writing, commemoration, and collective remembrance to show how the passionate argument over the and#8220;meaningand#8221; of the Thirty Yearsand#8217; War shaped Germans' conception of their nation. The first book in the extensive literature on German history writing to examine how modern German historians reinterpreted a specific event to define national identity and legitimate political and ideological agendas, The Thirty Yearsand#8217; War and German Memory in the Nineteenth Century is a bold intellectual history of the confluence of history writing, religion, culture, and politics in nineteenth-century Germany.
About the Author
Kevin Cramer is an associate professor of history at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis.