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Political Epistemics The Secret Police, the Opposition, and the End of East German Socialism

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ISBN-10: 0226297942

ISBN-13: 9780226297941

Edition: 2011

Authors: Andreas Glaeser

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What does the durability of political institutions have to do with how actors form knowledge about them? Andreas Glaeser investigates this question in the context of a fascinating historical case: socialist East Germany's unexpected self-dissolution in 1989. His analysis builds on extensive in-depth interviews with former secret police officers and the dissidents they tried to control as well as research into the documents both groups produced. In particular, Glaeser analyzes how these two opposing factions' understanding of the socialist project came to change in response to countless everyday experiences. These investigations culminate in answers to two questions: why did the officers not…    
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Book details

Copyright year: 2011
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 4/15/2011
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 640
Size: 5.98" wide x 8.98" long x 1.73" tall
Weight: 1.892
Language: English

List of Illustrations
List of Abbreviations
Introduction: Understandings, Politics, and Institutions
Socialism as a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy-The Party's Project
From Marx to Conscious Social Transformation
Aporias of Producing Right Consciousness
Contingencies and Dynamics of Understanding-The Theory
Constituting Understandings through Validations
Dialectics in Spaces of Validation
Becoming Socialist Men-The Stasi Officers
Guardians of the Party State
Stasi Culture-Authority, Networks, and Discourses
Disenchantment, Disengagement, Opposition-The Dissidents
When Someone's Eden Becomes Another's Purgatory
Forming Groups, Organizing Opposition
Policing Understandings-Reproducing Misunderstandings
Attempting to Know and Control the Opposition
Conclusions: Paralyzing Uncertainties