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International Educational Studies
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East German Schools after Unification
Rosalind M. O. Pritchard
288 pages, 17 tables, bibliog., index
ISBN 978-1-57181-954-3 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (December 1998)
"... ungemein ausgewogene und einfühlsame Analyse der Entwicklungen… In seiner Mischung von Literatur- und Fallanalyse ist das Buch zugleich auch ein gutter Kurstext für Graduierten-Kurse. · German Studies Review
"A most commendable work, with sound empirical data and sensitive qualitative analysis." · Higher Education in Europe
After the unification of Germany had first been greeted with euphoria on both sides of the Wall, it did not take long for disillusion to set in when it became obvious that structures, mentality, values and outlook were very different in the Old and New Bundesländer. Moreover, whereas during the initial phase the East Germans were hoping just for a reform of their existing systems, they were soon disappointed and had to accept the fact that a fusion was out of the question; instead, East German structures were expected to assimilate to those of West Germany which led to the accusation of the latter's "colonization" of East Germany.
The restructuring of the education system played a crucial role in the transformation of East Germany; consequently, enormous sums were pumped into East German schools and the training of teachers. This is the first study in any language that closely examines the process re-education and addresses such vital questions as whether the reforms were educationally sound, to what degree they meshed with local circumstances, what measures were taken to fill the vacuum in moral and social values that was left by the discrediting of Marxism-Leninism, and what happened to the notion of "equality", the key principle of a socialist society. Contrasting the old and the new regime in the East, the author addresses these and many more critical issues. Numerous case studies and substantial interview material richly illustrate the author's arguments.
Rosalind M. O. Pritchard is Senior Lecturer in Education at the University of Ulster with responsibility for training teachers of Modern Languages and of English as a Foreign Language.
Subject: Educational Studies History: 20th Century to Present
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