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This book provides a stimulating overview of twentieth-century German art, focusing on some of the period's key works by Max Beckmann, George Grosz, Hannah Hoch, Willi Baumeister, Arno Breker, Joseph Beuys, and Gerhard Richter. In Peter Chametzky's innovative approach, these works become representatives rather than representations of twentieth-century history. That is, the art here does not simply illustrate an argument, the art is the argument. Chametzky draws on both scholarly and popular sources to demonstrate how the works (and in some cases, the artists themselves) interacted with, and even enacted, historical events, processes, and ideas. He asserts the continued historical role of material art works in an era when less material forms - photography, film, television, video, digital images - have assumed the function of visually depicting contemporary history.