The Fall of the Berlin Wall Worldwide Implications
Tracy Slagter (Political Science), Heike Alberts (Geography) and Monika Hohbein-Deegen (Foreign Languages) will describe the implications of the fall of the Berlin Wall for Germans as well as the entire world.
Nov 09, 2009
from 01:50 PM to 02:50 PM
|Contact Name||Heike Alberts|
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In her portion of the talk, Dr. Tracy Slagter will focus on the following:
The events that led to the collapse of the Berlin Wall in 1989 (Gorbachev's policies of perestroika and glasnost, the crumbling of communism in the Soviet Union, the weakening borders in Eastern Europe and the eventual inability of East German authorities to prevent East and West Germans from scaling the Wall)
The aftermath of the collapse; picking up the pieces after the end of bipolarity in international politics; uncertainty about what to do with Europe after communism (e.g., utility of NATO? effects on the European Union? EU-US relations? new European map?).
How the nature of world politics changed (e.g., types of conflicts in the world changed from interstate, militarized disputes to intrastate, ethnic disputes without easy resolution; increased need for multilateralism once the world could no longer be neatly divided between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.).
Dr. Heike Alberts will address the urban changes in Berlin after the fall of the Berlin Wall. When the Wall was still there, the city was literally cut into two halves, with interrupted transportation routes and a massive band of fortifications going through the heart of the city. After the fall of the Wall, the transportation routes had to be reconnected, and the area where the Wall had been became available for development. Because Berlin also became the German capital city again after the German Reunification in 1990, a new government complex was built that symbolically reunites the two halves of the city, and efforts were undertaken to strike a balance between leaving a memorial of the Wall and healing the scars that it had left behind. My talk will be illustrated with maps and photos juxtaposing Berlin with the Wall and contemporary Berlin.