Willy Brandt

Willy Brandt (vĬl´ē bränt), 1913–92, German political leader. His name originally was Karl Herbert Frahm. Active in his youth in the Social Democratic party, after Adolf Hitler came to power (1933) he fled to Norway and began a journalistic career, soon becoming a Norwegian citizen. When Norway was invaded (1940), he was imprisoned briefly by the Germans but escaped to Sweden. Returning to Germany after World War II, he resumed (1947) German citizenship. He served (1949–57) in the Bundestag and (1957–66) as mayor of West Berlin. In 1964 he became chairman of the Social Democratic party and was named foreign minister (1966) in the Christian Democratic–Social Democratic coalition government headed by Kurt Kiesinger. After Brandt's party won the federal elections he became chancellor (1969–74) with the support of the Free Democratic party. His government initiated peace talks with Eastern European countries and with East Germany, resulting in nonaggression treaties with the USSR and Poland (1971) and the signing of a treaty with East Germany in 1972. Brandt was awarded the 1971 Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts. He resigned on May 6, 1974, following revelations that a close aide was an East German spy, but remained chairman of the Social Democratic party until 1987. President of the Socialist International in 1976, and Socialist member of the European Parliament (1979–83), he became honorary President of the East German Social Democratic party in 1990: after campaigning unsuccessfully for it in that year's elections, he remarked that the "so-called Socialist countries gave socialism a bad name."

See his North-South: A Program for Survival (1980).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

A Dictionary of Political Biography
Dennis Kavanagh.
Oxford University Press, 1998
Librarian’s tip: "Willy Brandt" p. 62
My Road to Berlin
Willy Brandt.
Doubleday, 1960
Europe, Cold War and Coexistence, 1953-1965
Wilfried Loth.
Frank Cass, 2004
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 17 "The East-West Problem as Seen from Berlin: Willy Brandt's Early Ostpolitik"
German Politics, 1945-1995
Peter Pulzer.
Oxford University Press, 1995
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 6 "Ostpolitik"
Dealing with the Devil: East Germany, Detente, and Ostpolitik, 1969-1973
M. E. Sarotte.
University North Carolina Press, 2001
Librarian’s tip: Chap. One "Setting the Stage in 1969: Old Worries and New Initiatives in the Era of Nixon and Brandt"
From the Berlin Museum to the Berlin Wall: Essays on the Cultural and Political History of Modern Germany
David Wetzel.
Praeger Publishers, 1996
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 9 "The Making of ein Berliner: Kennedy, Brandt, and the Origins of Detente Policy in Germany"
Reinventing Germany: German Political Development since 1945
Anthony Glees.
Berg Publishers Ltd., 1996
Librarian’s tip: "Chancellor Willy Brandt" p. 157, "Brandt's Second Administration" p. 161
Looking for a topic idea? Use Questia's Topic Generator