- List of Maps, Tables, and Illustrations
- List of Contributors
- List of Abbreviations
- Origins of Modern Germany
- Senses of Place
- Women and Men: 1760–1960
- States, People, and Nation, 1760–1860
- International Conflict, War, and the Making of Modern Germany, 1740–1815
- Cosmopolitanism and the German Enlightenment
- The Atlantic Revolutions in the German Lands, 1776–1849
- The End of the Economic Old Order: the Great Transition, 1750–1860
- Escaping Malthus: Population Explosion and Human Movement, 1760–1884
- Protestants, Catholics, and Jews, 1760–1871: Enlightenment, Emancipation, New Forms of Piety
- The Formation of German Nationalism, 1740–1850
- German Literature and Thought From 1810 to 1890
- Germany: The Nation State
- Nation State, Conflict Resolution, and Culture War, 1850–1878
- Authoritarian State, Dynamic Society, Failed Imperialist Power, 1878–1914
- The Great Transformation: German Economy and Society, 1850–1914
- Race and World Politics: Germany in the Age of Imperialism, 1878–1914
- Germany 1914–1918. Total War as a Catalyst of Change
- The German National Economy in an Era of Crisis and War, 1917–1945
- Dictatorship and Democracy, 1918–1939
- Piety, Power, and Powerlessness: Religion and Religious Groups in Germany, 1870–1945
- The Place of German Modernism
- Nationalism in the Era of the Nation State, 1870–1945
- Todesraum: War, Peace, and the Experience of Mass Death, 1914–1945
- The Three Horseman of the Holocaust: Anti-Semitism, East European Empire, Aryan Folk Community
- On the Move: Mobility, Migration, and Nation, 1880–1948
- Germany 1945–1989
- Germany is No More: Defeat, Occupation, and the Postwar Order
- Democracy and Dictatorship in the Cold War: the Two Germanies, 1949–1961
- Generations: The ‘Revolutions’ of the 1960s
- Industrialization, Mass Consumption, Post-industrial Society
- Religion and the Search For Meaning, 1945–1990
- Culture in the Shadow of Trauma?
- The Two German States in the International World
- Contemporary Germany
- <i>Annus Mirabilis</i>: 1989 and German Unification
- Germany and European Integration Since 1945
- Toward A Multicultural Society?
Abstract and Keywords
This article provides an overview of post-industrial German society. how industrialization came across, mass consumption, and how the post-industrial German society fared. Framed by the postwar crisis and early Cold War rivalry, debate about the future of German class society began almost as soon as the war ended. Americans assured despairing Germans that the ‘free market’ would generate prosperity and foster social fairness. Communists promised the hungry masses that expropriation and the nationalization of industry would create social equality and forge economic expansion. After 1949, the two Germanys continued to embody competition between capitalism and communism. The fate of class society in each state always provoked debate, with several points of consensus emerging from a discussion increasingly centered on social and economic data, not crude propaganda. Both societies experienced an attenuation of socially-distinctive life styles. An assessment of the change and continuity in German society between 1945 and 1990 concludes this article.
Donna Harsch is Professor of History at Carnegie Mellon University.
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