Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Enemies To AlliesCold War Germany and American Memory$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Brian C. Etheridge

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780813166407

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813166407.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM KENTUCKY SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.kentucky.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright The University Press of Kentucky, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in KSO for personal use.date: 17 October 2019

“Tomorrow the World”

“Tomorrow the World”

Images of Germany before the Cold War

(p.15) 1 “Tomorrow the World”
Enemies To Allies

Brian C. Etheridge

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter establishes how Germans, in many ways, have served as America's “other” since the founding of the English colonies in the seventeenth century. For the first half of American history, Americans largely interpreted Germany through the waves of German settlers coming to the New World. As the largest non-Anglo ethnic group before the Great War, German Americans served as a convenient point of contrast for understanding Americans and Americanism. After the establishment of the German Reich, mainstream Americans looked to the German nation for a better understanding of Germans and Germanness and were impressed with German culture, education, efficiency, and productivity during much of this time period. At the same time, however, as the emerging foil against the United States in both world wars, the German Empire furthered America's continued conception of itself as the defender of freedom against militarism and authoritarianism. The chapter shows how the arrogant public diplomacy of the Wilhelmine and Nazi regimes failed to capitalize on the former impressions and often reinforced the latter. Still, the ongoing debate during the Second World War as to the nature of the German people failed to arrive at a clear consensus by the end of the war.

Keywords:   German Americans, German Empire, Americanism, Nazi regime, World War I, World War II

Kentucky Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .