To strive for more peace

Event: Regional and International Affairs

Willy Brandt’s work and political contribution had a great impact far beyond the territorial and political borders of Germany. On the occasion of his 100th birthday in December 2013 and the 30th anniversary of his first visit to China, the Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung organized an event on the 6th and 7th of November 2014 in honour of Willy Brandt.

It was an opportunity to remember the former German Chancellor, Nobel Peace Prize holder and long-standing Chairman of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) and to discuss the relevance and popularity of his political beliefs.

Photo: Reception to the Movienight and Panel Discussion on “100 Years Willy Brandt” at Tongji University

The highlight of the event was the documentary film “Willy Brandt - Erinnerung an ein Politikerleben” (“Willy Brandt - In memory of a polician’s life”), which was presented as part of the German Week at Tongji University. The ensuing discourse then focused on certain chapters of Brandt’s life. Participants of the discussion were Dr. Bernd Rother (Bundeskanzler-Willy-Brandt-Stiftung / Chancellor-Willy-Brandt-Foundation) and Prof. Yin Shouzheng (former member of the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations and sole Chinese biographer of Willy Brandt). During the debate, both experts expressed their personal views of Willy Brandt and discussed with Tongji University students about the topicality and importance of Brandt’s “Ostpolitik” (Eastern Policy, reconciliatory German foreign policy towards former Eastern Europe and Asia). Furthermore, the implications of Brandt’s visit to China for the Sino-German relations were subject of debate.

In addition, Dr. Bernd Rother gave several lectures about the principles and strategies of Willy Brandt’s foreign policy at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences (SASS) and the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies (SIIS).

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