LikeRobert A. Kann, I too am a historian by profession. Despite the close links between their subject and disciplines such as sociology land political science, historians on the whole avoid attempting to analyze contemporary politics. This lecture will therefore concentrate on the first twenty-five years of the Second Republic. Yet I am well aware that in the Kreisky era (notably as a result of the reforms introduced by Hertha Firnberg and Christian Broda) Austria's progress toward Western Europe took on a new character, and the country underwent what was, for the time being at least, its final major modernization. But it was an analysis of the wholly different steps taken toward the West between 1945 and 1970 that laid the foundation on which the single-party Social Democratic (SPÖ) government of the 1970s was able to build. It therefore seems legitimate to focus upon that first half of the history of the Second Republic, and to see the turning point marked by the student movement of 1968 and the election results of 1970 as a natural cutoff point for this discussion. Broadly speaking, the main concerns of the new state in its first two and a half decades were to provide a framework of order for the very disparate elements that it had inherited and to deal with the immense problems now confronting it. NaCenter for Austrian Studiestional Socialism, by its policies and the effects of all-out war, had left behind a country in ruins in every sense—not only materially through the destruction of housing, infrastructure, and industrial plant, but also intellectually and culturally. Most of the leading figures in Austria's cultural and intellectual life had been driven into exile or murdered.