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The Saar dispute in Franco-German relations and European integration: French diplomacy, cultural policies and the construction of European identity in the Saar, 1944--1957

Posted on:2008-08-20Degree:Ph.DType:Dissertation
University:Indiana UniversityCandidate:Long, Bronson WilderFull Text:PDF
This dissertation examines the dispute between France and West Germany over the Saar, a coal-rich German province on the border with France. France occupied the Saar in 1945 and in 1947 the French government transformed the province into an autonomous territory economically linked to France in a customs and monetary union. After 1949, the Saar's ultimate fate became the subject of a bitter disagreement both within and between France and West Germany. Although France and West Germany did agree to make the province into a European territory in 1954, Saarlanders voted against this idea the following year, and the Saar returned to West Germany in 1957. This dissertation argues that anxieties over Germany lay behind disagreements on the Saar and that political elites in France, West Germany, and the Saar used a transnational discourse to advance their differing agendas. This dissertation also contends that the ideas and actions of clashing political elites and not the long-term, coherent plans of national governments shaped the outcome of the Saar dispute and the early stages of European integration.
Keywords/Search Tags:Saar, Dispute, European, West germany
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