Willy Brandt: Life of a Statesman

October 4th, 6PM: The German Historical Institute and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung

invite you to a presentation of and discussion on this newly translated book.



  • Author Prof. Hélène Miard-DelacroixParis-Sorbonne University
  • Comments by Prof. Andrew Demshuk, American University
  • Moderated by Dr. Christian Ostermann, Woodrow Wilson Center

October 4th, 2017 @ 6:00 PM 
Venue: Middle East Institute's Ballroom
1319 18th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036 MAP
Light reception from 6:00 to 6:30pm   |  Panel from 6:30 to 8:00pm


Who was Willy Brandt?

Willy Brandt (1913-1992) was the first Social Democrat Chancellor of West Germany between 1969 and 1974. More than 20 years chairman of the German Social Democratic Party (SPD), Brandt's fresh spirit and his pledge for more democracy fell on fruitful soil in the 1960s. Against the backdrop of much of the political establishments open despise of his politics, Brandt had the ability to motivate people beyond the core SPD voters to take responsibility, participate in politics and be a part of creating a different society. Often at the forefront of some of Germany's most definitive and controversial decisions, Brandt maintained West Germany's close alignment with the United States, and took bold steps towards a more liberal society. He paved the way for the eventual reunification of the country, as well as strengthening European integration in western Europe. In 1971, he received the Nobel Peace Prize for "Ostpolitik," his policy of reconciliation with Germany's neighbours in the Eastern Bloc.


About Hélène Miard-Delacroix

Hélène Miard-Delacroix is a historian and political scientist. Her numerous publications cover (German) political history and the history of Franco-German relations as well as various political cultures, images of Europe, and the origins of nationalism. Miard-Delacroix’ works have provided key impulses to the research trend of ‘entangled history’ (histoire croisée). Miard-Delacroix has held the chair of contemporary German history and culture at the Paris-Sorbonne University since 2008. She is a mediator between Germany’s and France’s academic cultures, and bears the orders Bundesverdienstkreuz am Bande and Ordre des Palmes Académiques.


About the book

Miard-Delacroix' biography of Willy Brandt has found international attention and was translated into English in November 2016. This definitive new biography illuminates Brandt's personal life and political career, providing new perspectives on one of the leading statesmen of the twentieth century. Miard-Delacroix deals not only with the chancellor but also with the way he is perceived in France, keeping in perspective the different nature of both countries’ political cultures and thus drawing a detailed picture of the sometimes difficult bilateral relations of the time.

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