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Backpack AmbassadorsHow Youth Travel Integrated Europe$
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Richard Ivan Jobs

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226438979

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226439020.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 11 May 2021

Journeys of Reconciliation

Journeys of Reconciliation

(p.59) Two Journeys of Reconciliation
Backpack Ambassadors

Richard Ivan Jobs

University of Chicago Press

Chapter 2 discusses how, in the context of the emerging Cold War, Western European nations, led by France and West Germany, established cooperative institutions that integrated their political and economic interests to small degrees. Overlooked by historians, an emphasis on bilateral relations through youth exchange between France and West Germany preceded and accompanied the more well-known institutional efforts of integration and were conceived as integral to it. This began immediately after the war in the French zone of Occupation, continued with the 1951 European Youth Rally at Loreley, and culminated in the 1963 establishment of the Franco-German Youth Office, which has since facilitated the exchange of more than 10 million young French and Germans. This did not come about without significant tensions, however, as multiple groups were suspicious of their national counterparts and of the perceived value of social interaction. Still, in the late 1960s, the government of the United Kingdom put these Franco-German programs under study and became convinced that they were essential to the success of Franco-German reconciliation and integration and blamed the UK’s lack of comparable programs for its failed efforts to join the EEC.

Keywords:   bilateral relations, occupation, reconciliation, Franco-German Youth Office, Loreley Youth Rally, France, West Germany, youth exchange, United Kingdom, European Economic Community

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