The Beginner in the Bundestag

Learning Process and Assimilation of the Parliamentarian Ethos in Germany
By Martin Baloge

This article focuses on the various learning processes that newly elected German parliamentary members face when discovering the Bundestag. Based on an ethnographic protocol applied during the first weeks of a new conservative MP of the CDU/CSU, this article shows that the assimilation of a parliamentarian ethos is a chaotic process during which numerous actors play an important role. The observation also shows that it is during these first weeks that mechanisms of distinction based on the characteristics of the newcomers emerge. The role and the position of every newcomer are established very quickly within the Bundestag.

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