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MemoryPhoto (detail): Harald Hauswald @ Bundesstiftung Aufarbeitung


Vergangenheitsbewältigung: German for “coming to terms with the past”. What remains of East Germany (GDR) thirty years after Reunification? How is the history of the German partition between East and West Germany told and re-told? How do GDR citizens remember a country that ceased to exist overnight? What kind of histories become available once we step out of the mainstream narrative and look at mundane everyday life? What are micro- histories? Finally, why remember? 

415 hours of GDR home movies

 How to Navigate OMB Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

How to navigate Open Memory Box

415 hours of home movies in the GDR made by East German citizens? Don't know where to start? The Co-founders of Open Memory Box take you on a tour and show how to easily navigate this fascinating project of commemoration. 

What is Open Memory Box Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

What is Open Memory Box?

Alberto Herskovits and Laurence McFalls, PhD, present their project Open Memory Box for which former GDR citizens submitted  private video footage of mundane daily life collected throughout the years. 

Why Open Memory Box Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

Why Open Memory Box?

Alberto Herskovits and Laurence McFalls, PhD, talk about the importance of hearing unfiltered voices from the GDR in order to write a more nuanced history. 

Andrew Port Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

What can the US learn from Germany's coming to terms with the past?

Why come to terms with the past at all? Why remember? Why try to deal with the difficult legacy of it all? Andrew Port, PhD, Professor of History at Wayne State University weighs in. 

David Gill Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

Dealing with the Nazi Past in East and West Germany

German General Consul in NY David Gill talks about how both German states tackled the Nazi past differently. 

Reunification Revisited © Goethe-Institut New York

Democracy and Socialism

In 1989, Ingrid Miethe, PhD, a GDR citizen, still thought that “Socialism with a human face” was possible. What does she think today? Do democracy and Socialism go hand in hand? 
See answer.

Persecution in the GDR Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

Persecution in the GDR

Mario Roellig attempted to escape the GDR in 1987, but was caught and imprisoned in a Stasi high- security prison. Why is his history of persecution in the GDR important? What can it help us understand? In German with English subtitles. 

Noa Ha Video still: @ Goethe-Institut New York

The Past in Berlin`s Geography

Like no other German or European city, Berlin embodies the Cold war division into East and West. 30 years after Reunification, can you still see this division in the geography of the city? Noa K. Ha, PhD talks about everyday encounters with history.

Mahdis Azarmandi Video still: © Goethe-Institut New York

The Colonial Past in German Public Discourse Today

Mahdis Azarmandi, PhD, grew up in Germany in the 90ies. What did she learn about Germany's colonial past? And how present is this past in the German public discourse today? 

 A Peaceful Revolution @ Goethe-Institut New York

A peaceful revolution

The multimedia brochure A Peaceful Revolution- 30 Years Fall of the Berlin Wall invites students of German and anyone interested in contemporary German and European history to explore the events, people and personal narratives that shaped the fall of the Berlin Wall 30 years ago.  

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