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Exhibition: The Cold War. Causes - History - Consequences

Our joint exhibition with the Federal Foundation for the Study of the Communist Dictatorship in Eastern Germany titled "The Cold War. Causes - History - Consequences" will be available to public schools, universities, cultural or political institutions and the interested public starting in March 2016. With more than 160 historical photos and documents as well as QR codes linking to additional visual material, the exhibition provides a rich and impressive panorama of the Cold War as a determinant of global politics in the 20th century.


"Wag the Dog" – Politics at the Frontiers of the Cold War

Unraveling the multiple, entangled strands of the history of the Cold War remains one of the great challenges of research into the recent past, and especially in what was then the Third World. Because the frontiers of the rival spheres of influence in the Northern Hemisphere stayed fixed and, for the foreseeable future, seemed impenetrable, from the late 1950s onward the US and USSR increasingly shifted their struggle for resources, dominance and prestige toward the Global South. But American and Soviet leaders were not the only actors who determined the course of events. Historian Bernd Greiner on a topic that deserves greater attention.


Relics of the Cold War. Photographs by Martin Roemers

What is left of the Cold War? Dutch photographer Martin Roemers gives a clear answer: the structural and topographic relics of the conflict between East and West in Europe. He has tracked down and, so to say, preserved its traces. The shots of the twice winner of the World Press Photo Award and the 2015 Series Winner of the Street Photography Award take us to abandoned army bases and bunker complexes, military training areas, technical installations, monitoring facilities and memorial sites.


A Spectre is Haunting Arabia: How the Germans Brought Their Communism to Yemen

Why Yemen? What exactly was East Germany looking for there, in this forgotten corner of the world? And under what circumstances could this ideology imported from Central Europe be implemented? Miriam Müller's interdisciplinary case study of East Germany's intense involvement with the sole Marxist-Leninist state in the Arabian Peninsula – the People's Republic of Yemen – goes far beyond these questions.


Research on the Sino-Soviet rivalry in the Third World

Austin Jersild discussed his current publication projects as well as his current research on the Sino-Soviet rivalry in the Third World. His forthcoming work includes articles on Sino-East European relations in the 1950s as part of a volume on the normalization of Sino-European relations produced by the Cold War International History Project in Washington, D.C.


The GDR and the PLO: East Germany's Palestine Policy

For years, East Germany's Communist party, the SED, promoted the impression that it was cultivating a close and special relationship with the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) under the leadership of Yasser Arafat on the basis of common values and shared political goals. Lutz Maeke reaches a different conclusion: Conflict and confrontation, and not friendship and trust, marked the relationship between the GDR and the PLO under Arafat's chairmanship from the beginning.


Italy and the German Unification 1989/1990

The unification process between the two German states began on November 9, 1989. The event was a watershed for the project of European integration project. From the German perspective this process has been thoroughly investigated. The responses of the major powers as well as Britain and France are likewise well researched. To the present day, however, the Italian reaction is insufficiently documented. Deborah Cuccia sheds light on Italy's role in her dissertation project.


Public Lecture Series: New Research on the Cold War

In this joint public lecture series with the Humboldt University of Berlin, renowned international historians present their findings to an interested public. Fields and topics include military and diplomatic history, the history of emotions, social movements and "counter-experts", the history of knowledge and science, and cultures of memory. A number of these lectures are in English. Please refer to the more detailed program below for further information.