CJ -- Politics and Political

Lexikon der Politikwissenschaft: Theorien, Methoden, Begriffe [Lexicon of Political Science: Theories, Methods, Concepts]. Ed. Dieter Nohlen and Rainer-Olaf Schultze. 2 vols. München: Beck, 2002. x, viii, 1,020 p. ill. 19 cm. (Beck’sche Reihe, 1463, 1464). ISBN 3-406-47603-1 (vol. 1): EUR 19.90, ISBN 3-406-67604-X (vol. 2): EUR 19.90 [02-2-418]

Dieter Nohlen has edited other lexicons of political science, and pieces by many of the 146 contributors to this volume are to be found in other works, but this up-to-date lexicon has more articles than the Lexikon der Politik, and many more than the Kleines Lexikon zur Politik. Concentrating on theory, concepts, methods, approaches, and research tools—the “scholarly toolkit of political science”—and omitting geographical concepts, institutions, organizations, and associations, 1,300 articles give definitions, explanations, and secondary literature. This lexicon should be in all public libraries and in academic libraries with relevant collections. [jpl/mrh]

Europa-Handbuch [Handbook of Europe]. Ed. Werner Weidenfeld. 2d updated and completely rev. ed. Gütersloh: Verlag Bertelsmann-Stiftung, 2002. 935 p. 22 cm. ISBN 3-89204-630-1: EUR 35.00 [02-2-420]

The first edition of this handbook came out in 1999 (see RRE 5:201). As advertised, this new edition represents an extensive revision of the earlier one, with significant improvements in the structure, essays about 15 additional countries, and general updating of the contents. Articles cover history, politics, foreign relations, and the developing European Union. There is a section on statistics, as well as several indexes, including a new index of persons. The editors have managed the notable feat of improving the content of the work while reducing its length. [jpl/gw]

Bismarcks Reichstag: das Parlament in der Leipziger Straße; fotographiert von Julius Braatz [Bismarck’s Reichstag: The Parliament on Leipzig Street; photographed by Julius Braatz]. Düsseldorf: Droste, 2002. 319 p. ill. 29 cm. (Photodokumente zur Geschichte des Parlamentarismus und der politischen Parteien, 6). ISBN 3-7700-5244-7: EUR 49.80. [02-2-421]

The Commission for the History of Parliamentarianism and Political Parties in Bonn was fifty years old in 2002. In 1998 it produced an annotated bibliography of its publications, Autoren, Bücher, Rezensenten: annotierte Bibliographie 1953–1998 (Düsseldorf, 1998). The volume under review is a sort of anniversary gift, based on two compilations of Berlin court photographer Julius Braatz’ work that are found today in only a few archival and private collections: a portfolio entitled Der Deutsche Reichstag und sein Heim [The German Parliament and its Home] (1889) and an album, Der Deutsche Reichstag in Wort und Bild [The German Parliament in Words and Pictures] (1892). The photographs present the old parliament building (a few years before the present one designed by Wallot) and its members, both in portraits of individuals and in groups. There is important documentation of Braatz’ own studio, and a minutely researched introductory study by Andreas Biefang. This beautiful and reasonably priced volume will come to be considered an essential source publication. [jl/jpn]

Biographisches Handbuch der Mitglieder des Deutschen Bundestages 1949–2002 [Biographical Handbook of Members of the German Bundestag, 1949–2002]. Ed. Rudolf Vierhaus and Ludolf Herbst. 3 vols. München: Saur. xiii, 1,177, 639 p. 25 cm. ISBN 3-598-23780-4 (set): EUR 538.00 [02-2-422]

This biographical lexicon covers all of the over 3,000 members of the German Bundestag, or parliamentary lower house, from the first electoral period in 1949 up to the beginning of 2002. Entries for each member contain: a heading giving name, place and date of birth, profession, religious affiliation, and date and place of death, if applicable; a brief narrative biography, concentrating on (but not limited to) the stages of the member’s political career; and a listing of publications by and about the member, as well as the depository location of the member’s official papers.

An appendix in volume 2 contains name and place indexes and several lists, including Bundestag presidents and vice-presidents; the chairmen, deputy chairmen and parliamentary secretaries of the political parties; and Bundestag members who held office in previous German legislative bodies (such as the parliament of imperial and Weimar Germany, the Reichstag; and the former East German parliament, the Volkskammer) . Vol. 3 contains additional lists and tables covering legislative periods, election results 1949–1998, and parliamentary committees. This lexicon belongs in every research library and all large public libraries. [sh/jc]

Handbuch zur Statistik der Parlamente und Parteien in den westlichen Besatzungszonen und in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland [Statistical Handbook of Parliaments and Parties in the Western Occupied Zones and in the Federal Republic of Germany]. Düsseldorf: Droste. 25 cm. (Handbücher zur Geschichte des Parlamentarismus und der politischen Parteien, ...). [02-2-423]

Pt.1. Abgeordnete in Bund und Ländern: Mitgliedschaft und Sozialstruktur 1946–1990 [Federal and State Representatives: Membership and Social Structure, 1946–1990]. Christian Handschell. Düsseldorf: Droste, 2002. 524 p. 25 cm. (..., 12). ISBN 3-7700-5245-5: EUR 59.80

The information presented in this work concerning the members of the Bundestag (the parliamentary lower house) and the parliaments of the West German Länder (states) from 1946–1990 taken en masse is not useless—though the individual facts are. Characteristics such as length of time in office, gender, profession, education, and age of the representatives are tabulated at length. So much data ... yet so little substance.

Why this work emanated from the highly respected Kommission für die Geschichte des Parlamentarismus und der Politischen Parteien [Commission for the History of Parliamentarianism and Political Parties] is unclear. If anything, this is a work for sociologists, not historians. And why publish it as a book, an unreadable one at that? Far better would have been to create a generally accessible database to present the raw material with which historians could then work, and to redirect the cost of paper publication to actual monographs. What is modern database technology for, if not for such otherwise meritorious compilations and tabulations as the one Christian Handschell has given us here? [jl/dss]

Österreichisches Vereins- und Parteienlexikon: von der Aufklärung bis 1938 [Lexicon of Austrian Associations and Political Parties: From the Enlightenment to 1938]. Ed. Anton Pelinka and Helmut Reinalter. Innsbruck: Studien-Verlag, 2002. 245 p. 21 cm. (Interdisziplinäre Forschungen, 10). ISBN 3-7065-1442-7: EUR 25.00 [02-2-426]

It is unfortunate that the scope of this work ends in 1938, without covering World War II and the postwar era, so that it is prevented from pursuing a number of its stated themes into the present day. The editors explain in their preface that a work covering the post-1938 period is planned and will be published separately.

The volume consists of two sections, comprising 26 articles by 20 contributors, who are historians and political scientists, quite a few of them well-known. Each article (on average 9 pages long) is a concise but scholarly essay. The first section covers the period from the Enlightenment up to 1870, and discusses the various associations found in bourgeois society—political, professional, trade-based, and religious. The second section concentrates on the history of political parties in Austria from 1867 to 1945 and covers the entire political spectrum from extreme left to extreme right. The articles are not so much empirical studies, but rather have the character of in-depth analysis. Each organization’s structure and history are described; important controversies are addressed. A bibliography is included. This work is suitable for use at the university level; there is nothing comparable dealing with this particular realm of Austrian history.

Regrettably, little effort was expended on making the work’s contents accessible to the searcher. There are no cross-references and no indexes, which brings it down to the level of a general handbook rather than the lexicon it claims to be. The work is recommended for academic libraries with an interest in Austrian history. [jpl/crc]

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