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Art, society and politics in Germany 1949-2005 - 20 credits (HST619)

By 1949 the German art tradition had been disrupted not just by National Socialist ideology, but also now by the division into a Soviet-sponsored German Democratic Republic and a western-oriented Federal Republic of Germany. Artistic production in the two states was characterised by the conflicts of the Cold War. Both republics prospered economically in their respective political blocs, but in the FRG in the 1960s and the 1970s and in the GDR in the 1970s and 1980s social and political protest made itself felt. At the same time the range of artistic expression widened considerably and reflected social and political concerns. Both before and after the revolution in the GDR in 1989 and the unification of Germany in 1990, German artists reflected aspects of the longer-term German past in their work. Women artists also began to have a greater impact on the practice and content of art in Germany.