Immigration, asylum and citizenship in Germany: the impact of unification and the Berlin Republic

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In recent years, there has been much debate over whether post-unification Germany, often termed the 'Berlin Republic', represents a substantive change from the 'Bonn Republic ', that is, West Germany. This article analyses Germany's immigration and citizenship policy against this background by examining various dimensions of immigration before and after unification. The article argues that both unification itself and Germany's changed international environment have resulted in far-reaching changes in policy, which have forced a reappraisal of Germany's traditional self-image as a 'non-immigration country'.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-104
Number of pages23
JournalWest European Politics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2001


  • Germany, immigration policy, citizenship policy, unification

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