Despite its “from above” perspective Schibelbusch does accurately convey that after Germany lost the war there was a common misunderstanding of what their nation meant. For many Germans, there was a sense of loss of what their nation represented, stood for, and what the future meant. For millions of Germans who felt their young nation was going on the right path, saw for the first time their future as grim. While the war was harsh and imposed food and economic scarcity, the collective German psyche was not prepared or aware of what losing the war meant for their country. Throughout the reading I couldn’t help but think back to election night and the days that followed.
Across campus there was a sense of loss. Obviously, the 2016 results shrivel in comparison to what occurred in Germany but it is important for our generation to have a frame of reference to understand 1918. Many who voted against the Trump campaign thought their fellow Americans saw the nation as one of progress and accepting. They see a Trump victory as a 180 of what they believe this nation has worked to achieve. On November 9 many who opposed Trump felt like they completely lost touch with the United States and felt abandoned and betrayed by their fellow Americans.
One can only hope that we don’t turn on one another as in Germany and the Trump administration doesn’t become the precursor for a truly totalitarian regime built on fear.