2004-12-15Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.18452/7836
Im Dienst der “Arbeiter- und Bauernmacht”: Der Aufbau der Nordistik in der DDR
The existence of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) was confirmed by the declaration of its sovereignty and its membership in the Pact of Warsaw in 1954/55. After that, the new state soon developed lively political activities towards the western countries in order to get internationally recognized. But the fact that the West German government claimed to be the only representation of all Germany made it almost impossible for the GDR to improve its position in the western world. The Scandinavian countries, especially the neutral states Finland and Sweden, played quite an important role for East German foreign policy. The GDR saw in these countries better possibilities than elsewhere to undermine the western non-recognition policy. That is why the Socialist Unity Party (SED) supported the idea of re-founding the traditional Institute for Northern Studies at the University of Greifswald in the mid-fifties. The aim of the institute was first of all a political one: apart from the education of cadres as well as the research on political, economical, historical and philological questions concerning Scandinavia, the institute was supposed to create cultural and scientific contacts with the northern countries in order to prepare in longer terms the establishing of political relations.
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