Beyond the Wall: East Germany, 1949-1990

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Beyond the Wall: East Germany, 1949-1990

Beyond the Wall: East Germany, 1949-1990

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In 1990, a country disappeared. For the previous forty-one years, East Germany had existed in Western minds as more of a metaphor than a place, more of a grey communist blur than a land of real people with friends and families, workplaces and homes. As Germany once again became a single state, the history of the GDR was simplified and politicised. It was nothing but Stasi spies and central planning, nothing but a wall in Berlin. Powerfully told, and drawing on a vast array of never-before-seen interviews, letters and records, this is the definitive history of the other Germany, the one beyond the Wall.

Beyond the Wall: A History of East Germany: Hoyer, Katja

New angles on post-war Germany and Austria: Florian Huber, Sophie Hardach, Adam Scovell and Tom Smith https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0006sjx a b Peter, Conradi (2023-06-29). "Katja Hoyer tried to tell a different story about East Germany. Now Germans are furious". ISSN 0140-0460 . Retrieved 2023-06-29. While the end for East Germany came fast as its economy collapsed and its population actively protested on the streets, Hoyer seems keen to record some elements of its culture as positive. She notes the very high participation rate of women in the labour market, and the concomitant widely deployed state sponsored childcare facilities, both of which far exceeded comparable developments in the West. Was ich auch interessant fand, war wie die DDR in ihrer Anfangsphase (und später auch) um ihre Eigenständigkeit auch gegenüber der UdSSR pochte. Lange hält sich Hoyer mit der Frage auf, ob Stalin wirklich einen "eigenen" deutschen Staat wollte, oder ob er ihn eher widerwillig in Kauf nahm, nachdem sein Plan, die Westbindung von Westdeutschland zu verhindern, gescheitert war.However, the question of the Stasi remained a recurring thought as I read the book. The German Democratic Republic, with its all-pervasive Stasi and political oppression, instilled fear and earned East Germany the reputation of being one of the most severe authoritarian surveillance states. Those familiar with the book Stasiland by Anna Funder will understand the gravity of this. Ugaz’s case is all too familiar in Peru, where powerful groups regularly use the courts to silence journalists by fabricating criminal allegations against them.’

Beyond the Wall: East Germany, 1949–1990 by Katja Hoyer Beyond the Wall: East Germany, 1949–1990 by Katja Hoyer

Rating this book was a bit of a headache, for reasons I will get into shortly. Ultimately, I decided on a 3/5 since any more would be tacit approval of the current state of historiographical discourse regarding East Germany. If you do nothing, you will be auto-enrolled in our premium digital monthly subscription plan and retain complete access for 65 € per month.

Hoyer’s book examines all aspects of East German life, including politics and everyday experiences, and reveals that perceptions of life in the GDR and the consumerism of the West aren’t necessarily as we might expect. Here we explore some of the aspects of East German life that Hoyer covers in her book that demonstrate how the commonly held view of authoritarianism in the GDR may not tell the whole story. The establishment of West and East Germany Beyond the Wall also delves into the profound impact of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the subsequent reunification of Germany. Hoyer explores the mixed emotions experienced by East Germans during this period of profound change, including the loss of familiar structures and the challenges of transitioning to a market-based economy. She also reflects on the lasting legacy of the GDR and its impact on Germany's political and social landscape in the present day. I read from Hoyer's experience discussing the book in Germany that the German edition of Beyond the Wall stirred emotions in German readers, despite the fact that the 30-year gap between the German reunification and the present moment may provide relatively enough time to assess the process with more objectivity.



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