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The Other '68ersStudent Protest and Christian Democracy in West Germany$
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Anna von der Goltz

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780198849520

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198849520.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 23 January 2022

Combative Politics

Combative Politics

(p.181) 5 Combative Politics
The Other '68ers

Anna von der Goltz

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the shift towards a more confrontational form of campus politics in the wake of the dissolution of SDS in 1969/70, one in which concerns about left-wing violence moved centre-stage. It analyses centre-right students’ roles in some of the key debates of the 1970s—the controversy surrounding the ‘Radicals Decree’, the ‘Mescalero Affair’, and students’ alleged support for the terrorism of the RAF. It argues that Christian Democratic students were instrumental in making a scandal of left-wing activism at a time when a left-wing coalition governed the country for the first time since the war. Centre-right students contributed much to the febrile climate of the 1970s, this chapter shows, stoking public hysteria and helping to create a climate of distrust that made left-wing dissent politically suspect. Their conduct highlights that the process of political liberalization in the wake of 1968 was not a linear but rather a winding one.

Keywords:   terrorism, Christian Democrats, Radicals, Weimar Republic, universities, Helmut Kohl, political violence, Red Army Faction, Siegfried Buback, Nazi past

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