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"The German Way": Values and Interests

Research Group on German Affairs

13.09.2004 · C·A·P

Where are the Germans heading to? Where do we belong? - These questions keep coming up on the German agenda. The Germans have never stopped to raise questions about themselves. Their thinking about place and perspective has always permeated throughout and affected the varied history of continental Europe.

This is the current question, that intellectual life has continually posed itself and is posing again after the fundamental changes in Europe. The question of identity and location of the Germans, the problem of their political organization and spiritual orientation has moved spectators from abroad at all times. Yet, though a clear frame for judgements and a horizon for orientation seem to have eclipsed with the end of the east-west-conflict, the Germans will always determine their location on the basis of their self-images.

In this research project, strategic questions of German foreign policy are thus projected on spiritual-political questions of location. Additionally, the interdisciplinary "Studiengruppe Deutschlandforschung" established in the 80's tries to examine in depth the background of the discussion about the spiritual-political localization of Germany as a comprehensive issue of political culture and international politics.


Werner Weidenfeld, Der deutsche Weg, Siedler Verlag, 2. Aufl., Berlin 1991.

Karl-Rudolf Korte, Der Standort der Deutschen. Akzentverlagerungen der deutschen Frage in der Bundesrepublik seit den 70er Jahren, Verlag Wissenschaft und Politik, Köln 1990.

Karl-Rudolf Korte, Über Deutschland schreiben. Schriftsteller sehen ihren Staat, Beck Verlag, München 1992.

sowie die fünf von Werner Weidenfeld herausgegebenen Bände mit Materialien der Studiengruppe Deutschlandforschung.