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In the 1980s the West German Peace Movement - fearing that the stationing of NATO nuclear missiles in Germany threatened an imminent nuclear war in Europe - engaged in massive protests, including sustained civil disobedience in the form of sit-down demonstrations.
Civil Disobedience and the German Courts traces the historical and philosophical background of this movement and follows a group of demonstrators through their trials in the German criminal courts up to the German Constitutional Court - in which their fate was determined in two important constitutional cases. In this context, the volume also analyses the German Constitutional Court, as a crucial institution of government, in comparative perspective.
This book is the first full-length English language treatment of these events and constitutional decisions, and it also places the decisions at an important turning-point in German constitutional history.