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Becoming Madam Chancellor
Angela Merkel and the Berlin Republic


  • Date Published: September 2017
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108417730

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About the Authors
  • Since 2005, Angela Merkel has transformed not only the way Germans see themselves but also the way that politicians worldwide, male and female, perceive women in power. The East German daughter of a Protestant pastor, this physicist-turned-politician has deployed her life experiences to cultivate a unique set of leadership skills. Her pragmatic, data-driven, and future-oriented approach to politics - grounded in a commitment to democratic pluralism, human rights, and personal responsibility - has produced extraordinary paradigm shifts in many national policies in the wake of major crises. As the first English-language scholarly book to provide an in-depth account of her career and influence, Becoming Madam Chancellor examines Merkel's achievements across six key policy domains, contextualizes these within broader German history before and after reunification, and uncovers the personal and political factors that have contributed to Chancellor Merkel's hard-earned status as the world's most powerful woman.

    • The first English-language scholarly book to provide an in-depth account of Chancellor Merkel's career and influence
    • Covers six key policy domains, placing such reforms in a broader historical context, both before and after German reunification
    • Provides a clear and engaging narrative, offering many concrete examples and explaining complex historical and institutional relationships in an accessible way
    • Offers a gendered and intersectional analysis that considers Merkel as both Germany's first female and first 'Eastern' Chancellor to reveal the direct and indirect ways that one woman has made a difference with regard to descriptive, substantive, and transformative representation
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Becoming Madame Chancellor is the first comprehensive study of how Angela Merkel inhabited the German Chancellery and in the process profoundly shaped society as well as Germany's role in Europe. Meticulously researched and superbly written, the book follows Merkel's trajectory from being a pastor's daughter in former East Germany to becoming arguably the most powerful woman in the world. Ambitiously unpacking the 'Method Merkel' in domestic and international politics, this book is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand contemporary German politics as well as those interested in gender, power, and political representation.' Sabine Lang, University of Washington

    'Joyce Marie Mushaben paints a fascinating and multifaceted picture of the ten times over 'World's Most Powerful Woman'. The book grasps the extent to which Merkel's leadership has transformed the nation as a whole. Given her detailed, personal and first-hand knowledge about West German politics and culture, East German politics and identity, and German unification, as well as EU gender policies, Mushaben was in a unique position to write this important book.' Gabriele Abels, Chair for German and European Politics, University of Tübingen

    'This is a unique contribution for policy makers as well as academics on the most influential female political leader of the twenty-first century. It reads like a political novel though it reveals a sharp analysis based on a carefully researched study. A must read for anyone interested in European politics, German politics before and after reunification. and contemporary feminism.' Agnes Hubert, EU gender expert and Professor on Gender and Social Inequalities, College of Europe, Bruges

    'This scholarly work fills a great lacuna. … Mushaben is extremely well acquainted with the inner workings of German politics but has retained her outsider's perspective. This makes her book an especially interesting read even for those who are familiar with biographies of Merkel in German.' Gisela Dachs, Israel Journal of Foreign Affairs

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2017
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108417730
    • length: 356 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 158 x 24 mm
    • weight: 0.62kg
    • contains: 9 b/w illus. 8 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: 'Becoming Madam Chancellor'
    Part I. 'The Personal is the Political':
    1. The extreme make-over of Angela Merkel: gender, style and substance
    2. A Pastor's daughter in a 'difficult Fatherland': reconciling East and West German identities
    3. From Staatsräson to Realpolitik: reconfiguring German-Israeli relations
    Part II. From understudy to leading lady: Angela Merkel on the global stage:
    4. Checkmate: Angela Merkel, Vladimir Putin and the dilemmas of regional hegemony
    5. Madam non and the euro-crisis: shaping economic integration and governance
    Part III. 'Method Merkel' and the Push for Domestic Reforms:
    6. Fukushima, mon Amour: Merkel and the (supra)national energy turn-around
    7. Germany as a land of immigration: citizenship, refugees and the welcoming culture
    8. 'Misunderestimating' the world's most powerful woman, or why gender still matters

  • Author

    Joyce Marie Mushaben, University of Missouri, St Louis
    Joyce Marie Mushaben is Professor of Global Studies and the Curators' Distinguished Professor of Comparative Politics and Gender Studies at the University of Missouri, St. Louis. She has spent seventeen years living in Germany, researching East-West identities, EU policies, citizenship, migration and asylum reforms, women's leadership, social movements, and welfare states. Mushaben has received grants from the Ford Foundation, the German Academic Exchange Service, the Fulbright Foundation, the German Marshall Fund, and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

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