1968: The Global Revolutions

Europe and Latin America > Student Protests in Germany

As West Germany continued to confront the aftermath of World War II, partitioned Berlin served as a hub of anti-authoritarian activity. Student activism arose in response to governmental support of American war activities in Vietnam and proposed limitations on university admissions. As in France and the United States, activists viewed governmental intervention in international spaces and in student life as two facets of the same issue. While many manifestations were peaceful, others turned confrontational, often as a result of police brutality. Movement leader Fritz Teufel was arrested in a 1967 demonstration, and charged with treason – leading to months of organizing to earn his release. Organizations, including Germany’s leading student group – Sozialistischer Deutscher Studentenbund (SDS) – helped the protests gain momentum. These groups produced their own newspapers, journals, and flyers. Artists specialized in provocative titles and imagery – including the notorious publication Vergast die Kommune, or gas the commune – that frequently invoked the Nazi past.

Linkeck Kommune
Linkeck Underground Zeitung, 1968
RBML General Manuscripts 

K1 (Kommune I)                                              
Vergast die Kommune!, 1968                        
RBML General Manuscripts

“Teufel Ins Rathaus”
Protest Flyer, 1967
RBML General Manuscripts 

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