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28

Germany–Poland The initial border was drawn during the Potsdam Conference in the aftermath of the second world war, on 1945-08-02. The border was finalised by a joint East German-Polish commission in the aftermath of the Treaty of Zgorzelec on 1951-01-27. The last change happened on 1989-05-22 with redrawing of the sea border north of Usedom, gaining (then) ...


17

There never was a "reunification". Officially it was an "entry of the five new federal states into the the scope (reach?) of the German Basic Law", although the treaty accomplishing that was called Einigungsvertrag ("treaty of unity" or "treaty of agreement"!). These terms and words were very carefully chosen. First, to not upset people like Russians and ...


16

Until 1871, Germany wasn't "Germany." It was a collection of (often) warring German-speaking states like Prussia, Bavaria, etc. Austria, which was occupied elsewhere, never did join. The thing that unified the "Germans" was their common distrust of the French, even though some German states liked France more than others. Essentially, uniting to defeat and ...


12

There were changes in the newly unified Germany which were clearly inspired by GDR practice, but which were not a direct application of GDR laws and regulations. Government-organized childcare for preschool kids, especially those 1-3 years old, has been improved in the West. This had been common in the East. West Germany used to have a school system where ...


9

Germany's borders were defined by three wars. After its victory in the Franco-Prussian War in 1871 Germany took Alsace, and a quarter of Lorraine from France, defining its Western border. After the Allied victory in World War I in 1918, France took back Alsace-Lorraine, some adjustments were made in Belgium's favor further north, and a 60-mile wide "Polish ...


8

The question could be is there any reason not to reunite GDR and FRG? These are trivial reasons why they united: The Soviets claimed not to intervene in any conflicts under last years of Gorbachev. GDR and FRG had no cultural differences since the cultural differences were erased by the past centuries of imperial Germany. GDR had no real reason to remain ...


8

The Constitution of the German Confederation (1871), that turned the North German Confederation and several South German states into the German Empire was enacted on January 1st, 1871. The proclamation of Wilhelm I. as Emperor on January 18th was a "taking of office", not the unification per se. Declaring Wilhelm I. Emperor in the Hall of Mirrors served ...


7

Technically, West Germany (the FRG) did not annex East Germany (the GDR). Instead, the GDR declared their accession to the FRG. A treaty regulated the details. The GDR had a post-communist government for about a year. They did disassemble much of the political security apparatus and also acted to prevent the destruction of some documents. The vetting of ...


6

Well, I would say that the main reason for this reunification (apart from the 40 years of Cold War, Ostpolitik, "Star Wars", Oil price boom etc) was that the Bundesrepublik Deutschland (German Federal Republic, a.k.a. West Germany) had written in its Constitutional Law (Germany has no Constitution) that it understood itself as the Republic of the German ...


5

I'll look at the economics. Despite its history of being a Soviet economic powerhouse, the economic state of the DDR was poor. The East German mark was performing badly even in the 1980s. East Germany had a GDP per capita of 6064 DM compared to West Germany's 19 864 DM, p131. Clearly the subsidy the DDR could expect as well as the competent administration ...


5

Schleswig-Holstein became the rallying point for a united Germany, first in a war of Prussia and Austria against Denmark for the two provinces, then in a war of Prussia versus Austria. When Prussia won both times, it established itself as the dominant power in north Germany, around which the north German states coalesced. (Pulling in south Germany came later,...


4

Germany is still somewhat divided, legally, in the sense that the vast majority of local, communal and federal state level laws and regulations within the five new federal states continued to be binding unless and until a federal state parliament abolished them, one by one. That means 3300 such regulations were still in effect after October 3rd, 1990. Some ...


3

This is extremely "flowery" language. If it was translated from a German source, that didn't help, either. Germans in the GDR attempted to overthrow the Communist rule on June 17th, 1953. GDR police and Soviet tanks suppressed this uprising. There were deaths and death sentences afterwards. Afterwards, the GDR government prohibited emigration to the FRG. (...


2

Germany's current geographic shape was largely formed in wars. One can go arbitrarily far into the past here but it will get very messy - unification of Germany is probably a good start, there were relatively few changes after that. Germany's unification in 1871 was preceded by the Franco-Prussian War in which Prussia (and the German Empire) got Alsace and ...


2

To add to Tom Au's and Wladimir Palant's answers: On the eastern side, many of the land belonging to Poland were annexed over the 18th and 19th centuries between Prussia, Austria, and Russia. These defined some of the borders used later.


2

By supporting German states in their bid for independence from Denmark, Prussia was able to position itself as a champion of German nationalism, particularly in the question between a "small" Germany excluding Austria, and a "great" Germany including it.


1

I would recommend these articles: http://oxfordindex.oup.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199249978.003.0006 https://www.jstor.org/stable/40108749?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents https://www.uio.no/studier/emner/hf/iakh/HIS2351/h11/undervisningsmateriale/HIS2351_Kocka_HistoryBefore%20Hitler.pdf


1

Hanover was originally an electorate which was annexed to Westphalia during the Napoleonic wars. During those times a lot of countries were roadkill on the political highway, pawns in the global political dynamic. After Napoleon was defeated the English restored Hanover as a kingdom, a completely different status. Dictators (like kings and like Napoleon) do ...


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