Estranged Twins: Education and Society in the Two Germanys

Estranged Twins: Education and Society in the Two Germanys

Estranged Twins: Education and Society in the Two Germanys

Estranged Twins: Education and Society in the Two Germanys

Synopsis

List of Tables and Figures List of Abbreviations Preface Acknowledgments A Twin Study of a Different Kind The Two Germanys Public and Private Values in the German Democratic Republic Education Values and the Law in the Federal Republic of Germany Goals of Education in East and West Who Runs the Schools? Different Schools for Different Twins The Curriculum: Free Choice and Diversity versus No Choice and Requirements Teaching and Learning in the Schools of East and West Conclusion: Alternative Schools-Hospitals or Laboratories? Bibliography Index

Excerpt

This is a book about estrangement. It tells the story of how countrymen have been rent asunder by politics and ideology. It details the end of that brief and tragic period when Germans were united in a single state -- Germany endured for less than 75 years. It also shows that where formerly the German people were divided by regional and religious differences into small political fiefdoms, today they are being estranged because the frontier between two hostile world camps goes right through their territory. Today, not only is the country divided by an ugly scar, but the aspirations of its people are being gradually twisted apart as well.

This book is also about reconciliation. The authors of this work were both young boys in a world at war. The older relatives of each bore arms against the other's country. They grew up as enemies. Then, following the end of actual hostilities, each of them received an opportunity to study abroad in the other's land.

Lothar Martin was given an opportunity to leave his devastated homeland and to spend a year in the multinational community of a small college in upstate New York. It was a formative time in his life, and the amiable atmosphere of earnest study and college life gained a friend for the United States. This visit was to become the first of many to the United States; it helped Martin to define his career in education. In the field of comparative education and as a member of the international counseling movement, he has dedicated his work to the advancement of human services and international understanding.

Sterling Fishman's situation was somewhat different. His parents had fled as children from the religious persecution of Eastern Europe. His parents and relations then watched with horror and profound sadness as their coreligionists were hounded across Europe and exterminated. As Fishman became conscious of nations and politics, the word "holocaust" received its present coinage and was linked forever with Germany. Many years later it was a Gratitude Fellowship from the West German government that brought him to study at the University of Munich and to know Germans. Making lifelong friends in Germany has not caused Fishman to forget the victims of Nazi oppression, or the darker side of the human soul, but has rather led him to appreciate the complexities of the human condition. Like Martin, he has devoted his career to promoting . . .

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