Quick access:

Go directly to content (Alt 1) Go directly to first-level navigation (Alt 2)
ReligionPhoto (detail): Harald Hauswald @ Bundesstiftung Aufarbeitung


The GDR was not as aggressive in suppressing religious movements, as were other Eastern bloc countries. Occasionally, young people who were not allowed to pursue a successful career within the system, would train as theologians. Towards the end of the Socialist regime, churches became the main places where protest could be aired and diverging opinions expressed. The Blues masses were unique institutions in East Germany, where people would gather en masse to listen to Blues music, discuss politics and express religious devotion.

David Gill Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

Silencing the Church?

East Germany (GDR) was ultimately unsuccessful in “shutting down” or completely controlling the Church, as an ideological opponent. Were there any instances when the GDR came close to silencing the Church? If so, how did that affect religious movements throughout East Germany?

Churches as breeding ground for opposition movements Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

Protest in Churches

Churches were breeding grounds for oppositon movements in East Germany. Why did they play such a central role for young and old dissidents? What were Blues masses?

Mario Röllig Video still © Goethe-Institut New York

Opposition to the GDR regime

As a dissident, Mario Röllig was part of an evangelical group against the GDR regime. What was he

Reunification Revisited © Goethe-Institut New York

Employment: A personal Story

We asked, Ingrid Miethe, PhD answered: Could you briefly explain in what way the GDR influenced your education and work? 
See answer.

Return to