Between the mid-1970s and the mid-1980s a deep socio-economic transformation crossed both Eastern and Western Europe in very different, yet interrelated ways. In both regions, despite profoundly diverse contexts, communist parties reshaped their perception, image and vision of Europe accordingly. This article looks into East Germany’s perspective on some key elements of European politics, from Italian Eurocommunism to European integration, in the aftermath of the German Democratic Republic’s international recognition. The article explores three main aspects. First, it looks into the different reactions of, respectively, the East German Socialist Unity Party (SED) and the Italian Communist Party (PCI) to Europe’s momentous transition. In this respect, it argues that the former mainly focused on handling that change, by subsequently adapting the GDR’s inner and foreign policy, whereas the latter engaged in an attempt at leading and steering change, both domestically and internationally, through its Eurocommunist line. Second, the article investigates the East German perception of the “European Union” idea and reveals that this was seen as a project with significant political implications, that went beyond the visible economic power of the European Community. Third, the article reconstructs some of the main aspects of the GDR’s Westpolitik, within the context – and the limits – of the economic and energy crisis that in distinct ways involved both Western and Eastern Europe in the 1970s.

Fasanaro, L. (2022). Myth and Perceptions of Europe in the German Democratic Republic, 1975-1985: From Italian Eurocommunism to European Integration. HISTOIRE@POLITIQUE, 46, 1-20.

Myth and Perceptions of Europe in the German Democratic Republic, 1975-1985: From Italian Eurocommunism to European Integration

Laura Fasanaro
2022

Abstract

Between the mid-1970s and the mid-1980s a deep socio-economic transformation crossed both Eastern and Western Europe in very different, yet interrelated ways. In both regions, despite profoundly diverse contexts, communist parties reshaped their perception, image and vision of Europe accordingly. This article looks into East Germany’s perspective on some key elements of European politics, from Italian Eurocommunism to European integration, in the aftermath of the German Democratic Republic’s international recognition. The article explores three main aspects. First, it looks into the different reactions of, respectively, the East German Socialist Unity Party (SED) and the Italian Communist Party (PCI) to Europe’s momentous transition. In this respect, it argues that the former mainly focused on handling that change, by subsequently adapting the GDR’s inner and foreign policy, whereas the latter engaged in an attempt at leading and steering change, both domestically and internationally, through its Eurocommunist line. Second, the article investigates the East German perception of the “European Union” idea and reveals that this was seen as a project with significant political implications, that went beyond the visible economic power of the European Community. Third, the article reconstructs some of the main aspects of the GDR’s Westpolitik, within the context – and the limits – of the economic and energy crisis that in distinct ways involved both Western and Eastern Europe in the 1970s.
Fasanaro, L. (2022). Myth and Perceptions of Europe in the German Democratic Republic, 1975-1985: From Italian Eurocommunism to European Integration. HISTOIRE@POLITIQUE, 46, 1-20.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11590/405152
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