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Political EpistemicsThe Secret Police, the Opposition, and the End of East German Socialism$
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Andreas Glaeser

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780226297934

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226297958.001.0001

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When Someone's Eden Becomes Another's Purgatory

When Someone's Eden Becomes Another's Purgatory

(p.341) 7 When Someone's Eden Becomes Another's Purgatory
Political Epistemics

Andreas Glaeser

University of Chicago Press

This chapter focuses on the trajectories from school experiences up to the moment when people in socialist East Germany began to form discussion circles while trying to organize critically engaging programming in official performance venues—that is, the so-called cultural opposition. It gives an account of the gradual formation and transformation of political understandings among later activists of the peace, civil rights, and environmental movements in East Berlin during the 1980s. The sequencing of relevant experiences, the articulation of understandings, their subsequent corroboration in contingent events, their recognition in changing networks of authority as well as the various resonances they invoke provides the underlying structure of the narrative. The beginnings of dissidence can scarcely be comprehended as the result of differences in already well articulated discursive political understandings between an individual and the state.

Keywords:   school experiences, individual, state, cultural opposition, civil rights

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