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Germans Abroad
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Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht
The introductory essay engages with recent work on the myriad groups of German speakers that... mehr
Germans Abroad
The introductory essay engages with recent work on the myriad groups of German speakers that flourished outside the borders of the German nation-state between the 1880s and the 1930s. Since the end of the SecondWorldWar, scholars have treated the notion of the Auslandsdeutsche (German expatriates) with considerableideological suspicion. This essay, however, argues that a German history that moves beyond those prejudices and integrates these communities of German-speakers into a more inclusive historiography offers us the chance to create a dialog between German national history and the histories of the nations and regions inwhich German cultures took hold and, to use the language of the times, where German colonies were founded.The integration of these German spaces and their diverse communities into our historical narratives offers us the chance to fashion a more inclusive notion of German history, one that effectively decenters the role of the German nation-state by recognizing the inherently polycentric character of German nationhood during this period.