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Training the Political Imaginary Approaching the Discussion about the Emergency Laws through a Civil Defense Exercise (Germany, 1966)

Böttger, Jandra

The 1966 German civil defense exercise Fallex 66 differed from other military exercises held on a regular basis during the Cold War. Firstly, because it took place in the recently completed government bunker. And secondly, because the intensively disputed Emergency laws should be tested by a fictional «emergency parliament». This paper follows the hypothesis that the fusion of fictional and real elements in the exercised scenario, combined with a bodily and emotional immersion, had the power to influence the discussion about the Emergency laws. At the cutting surface between Aesthetics and Political Theory, this paper attempts to disentangle the complex net of fictional and imaginary dimensions at work in the exercise Fallex 66 and its reception.

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