The Ghosts of Berlin: Confronting German History in the Urban Landscape

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University of Chicago Press, Apr 15, 2008 - Political Science - 282 pages
In this compelling work, Brian Ladd examines the ongoing conflicts radiating from the remarkable fusion of architecture, history, and national identity in Berlin. Ladd surveys the urban landscape, excavating its ruins, contemplating its buildings and memorials, and carefully deconstructing the public debates and political controversies emerging from its past.

"Written in a clear and elegant style, The Ghosts of Berlin is not just another colorless architectural history of the German capital. . . . Mr. Ladd's book is a superb guide to this process of urban self-definition, both past and present."—Katharina Thote, Wall Street Journal

"If a book can have the power to change a public debate, then The Ghosts of Berlin is such a book. Among the many new books about Berlin that I have read, Brian Ladd's is certainly the most impressive. . . . Ladd's approach also owes its success to the fact that he is a good storyteller. His history of Berlin's architectural successes and failures reads entertainingly like a detective novel."—Peter Schneider, New Republic

"[Ladd's] well-written and well-illustrated book amounts to a brief history of the city as well as a guide to its landscape."—Anthony Grafton, New York Review of Books

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Review: The Ghosts of Berlin: Confronting German History in the Urban Landscape

User Review  - Nina - Goodreads

Great book - would have given it 4 stars if I was anything resembling an architect or civil engineer, however I read it merely for the purposes of a curious traveler. I learned so much about Berlin's ... Read full review


1 Berlin Walls
2 Old Berlin
3 Metropolis
4 Nazi Berlin
5 Divided Berlin
6 Capital of the New Germany
Chronology of Berlins History

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Page 6 - To put it crudely, the American foot in Europe had a sore blister on it. That was West Berlin. Anytime we wanted to step on the Americans' foot and make them feel the pain, all we had to do was obstruct Western communications with the city across the territory of the German Democratic Republic.

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