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The Mental AftermathThe Mentality of German Physicists 1945-1949$
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Klaus Hentschel

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199205660

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199205660.001.0001

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(p.1) 1 Introduction
The Mental Aftermath


Oxford University Press

This introductory chapter begins with a discussion of the validity of analyzing the chosen scientific community of physicists within the period 1945 to 1949 as the subject of a history of mentality (histoire des mentalités, Duby). Layers of mentality are suggested. After a brief survey of the existing methodological literature, it sets the historical stage of defeated Nazi Germany and lists the various components of the mentality of German physicists in the immediate aftermath of World War II. The final section identifies the sources upon which the book is based, centering around the representative periodical Physikalische Blätter, private correspondence by physicists, and testimony from exiles.

Keywords:   history of mentality, Georges Duby, layers of mentality, Nazi Germany, German physicists

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