Out of the East

From PDS to Left Party in Unified Germany

By David F. Patton

Subjects: German Studies, Political Parties, Political Science, History
Paperback : 9781438434506, 238 pages, January 2012
Hardcover : 9781438434490, 238 pages, February 2011

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Table of contents

List of Tables

1. Introduction

2. The PDS in the New Germany

3. Unification, Descriptive Representation,and the PDS

4. The Rise of the PDS

5. Normalization and Its Discontents

6. From PDS to Left Party

Selected Bibliography

Chronicles how the SED, a once villified political party, transformed itself into a viable national political party.


What happened to the ruling communist party of East Germany after the collapse of the Berlin Wall? The Left in Germany describes how the communist party's dissolution led to many of its core members founding a new party for a reuinified Germany. Over the last twenty years it has transformed many times, from the Socialist Unity Party to Party of Democratic Socialism to, finally, the successful Left party. Out of the East makes sense of these transitions, and reveals how a pariah party managed to survive and thrive in democracy.

David F. Patton is Professor of Government at Connecticut College. He is the author of Cold War Politics in Postwar Germany.