Representations of Flight and Expulsion in East German Prose (BOK)

Bill Niven

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It is by now almost a cliche that the flight and expulsion of Germans from east-central Europe at the end of the Second World War was a taboo topic in the German Democratic Republic. According to this claim, the Socialist Unity Party (SED) suppressed reference to flight and expulsion so as not to upset its socialist neighbors. This book shows that such a view does not hold up to serious scrutiny. While the topic may not have been addressed in the realm of politics or official commemoration, it was picked up again and again in literature, particularly fiction. Representations of flight and expulsion were by no means restricted, as some have asserted, to Christa Wolf's novel Kindheitsmuster: Niven's study documents around one hundred novels and short stories published in the GDR that address flight or expulsion. He argues that in the 1950s and early 1960s GDR fiction included many refugee figures. The predominant emphasis was on their integration under socialism rather than their experience of flight and loss of home; nevertheless, flight and to a lesser degree expulsion were depicted, as was their impact on individuals. They continued to be portrayed in the late GDR and in post-unification east Germany. Flight and expulsion were subject to a developing literary discourse in the GDR, a discourse that this book explores. Bill Niven is Professor in Contemporary German History at Nottingham Trent University.


Språk Engelsk Engelsk Innbinding Innbundet
Utgitt 2014 Forfatter Bill Niven
Boydell Press
ISBN 9781571135353
Antall sider 228 Dimensjoner 16,3cm x 23,9cm x 2,1cm
Vekt 506 gram Leverandør Bertram Trading Ltd