Academic Year 2009-2010

Event Title

Visions of Prussia: Good and Evil

Disciplines

European History | Jewish Studies

Description

Today, the term Prussia describes a historical state that no longer exists. However, during the 17th and 18th Centuries, Prussia became one of the most powerful states in Europe. In 1871, this state played the critical role in the unification of Germany. However, in light of the German tragedy as well as the Holocaust, how should historians and political scientists today regard the historic state of Prussia?

What were its traditions, morals and values? Was Prussia an evil force in Europe, a center of radical nationalism and militarism, as the leaders of the Allied nations proclaimed in 1945? With the passage of time and greater objectivity, what can historians and political scientists say about Prussia's good and long-lasting accomplishments as well as its positive legacies? This presentation provided answers to these questions.

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Visions of Prussia: Good and Evil

Today, the term Prussia describes a historical state that no longer exists. However, during the 17th and 18th Centuries, Prussia became one of the most powerful states in Europe. In 1871, this state played the critical role in the unification of Germany. However, in light of the German tragedy as well as the Holocaust, how should historians and political scientists today regard the historic state of Prussia?

What were its traditions, morals and values? Was Prussia an evil force in Europe, a center of radical nationalism and militarism, as the leaders of the Allied nations proclaimed in 1945? With the passage of time and greater objectivity, what can historians and political scientists say about Prussia's good and long-lasting accomplishments as well as its positive legacies? This presentation provided answers to these questions.