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Proletarische Virtuosen? Widersprüche und Verwerfungen in der Elitenpolitik der SED am Beispiel der Kampfgruppen der Arbeiterklasse

Proletarian virtuosos? Contradictions and faults in the elite policy of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (GDR), using the task forces of the working class as an example
[journal article]

Siebeneichner, Tilmann

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Abstract "The members of the 'Combat Groups of the Working Class' were considered as proletarian virtuosos because they voluntarily spent their leisure time for their commitment to the protection of the 'Socialist achievements'. This way representing Communist resilience, they were supposed to be particularly honoured and recognized. Already in the 1950s, however, it became obvious that praising violence as a political maxim was widely perceived as contradicting other programmatic aspects of SED rule. Thus, an analysis of the Combat Groups looks promising for uncovering the inner contradictions of State Socialist rule - elite consciousness vs. egalitarianism, pacifism vs. militancy, spontaneity vs. 'ruling through' - and for understanding why it finally became a failure." (author's abstract)
Keywords German Democratic Republic (GDR); elite; elite formation; political elite; state socialism; Socialist Unity Party of Germany (GDR); working class; social actor; political actor; political group; political domination; worker; role model; function; recruitment; military policy; Saxony-Anhalt; career; alcohol consumption; reunification; Federal Republic of Germany
Classification General History; Political Process, Elections, Political Sociology, Political Culture
Method qualitative empirical; quantitative empirical; historical
Document language German
Publication Year 2013
Page/Pages p. 83-107
Journal Totalitarismus und Demokratie, 10 (2013) 1
Issue topic Akteure der Diktatur: Regionale Fallstudien zur NS- und SED-Herrschaft
ISSN 1612-9008
Status Published Version; reviewed
Licence Deposit Licence - No Redistribution, No Modifications