Mauerparkt, 09.11.2014

How did life change for East Germans after November 1989?

On the 9th of November 1989 at 6:57pm Günter Schabowski, Member of Socialist Unity Party of Germany (SED) -Politbüro announced at a press conference that applications for private travel abroad would be allowed unconditionally. Furthermore, departure to the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) would be possible at any point on the border, unverzüglich (immediately).[1] When thousands of East Germans went to West Germany in the following days, the Berlin Wall as the most symbolic division between East and West Germany lost its validity. On those days of early November 1989, the future path of the two Germanys was still unclear.

The West German Einheitskanzler (Chancellor of Unity) Helmut Kohl needed to react on the demand “We are one nation” expressed by the East German population.[2] The huge immigration wave after November 1989 and the fear of instability hastened negotiations between the two Germanys and the allied states over structural, institutional, legal and ideological changes.[3] With the Einheitsvertrag (German reunification treaty),[4] which was discussed by two German delegations, the entry of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) into the FRG according to Article 23 of the Basis Treaty on the 3rd of October 1990 was legally confirmed.[5] Wolfgang Schäuble, interior minister of the FRG, who played a crucial role in arguing for the “fastest and most elegant route to reunification” points out in his memoirs that the GDR joined the FRG and not the other way around, because the negotiation did not take place between two similar states.[6] Accordingly, Hester Vaizey describes the reunification as a process of “replacement”, in other words the “wholesale takeover [of the East] by the West”.[7]

The “wholesale takeover” of East Germany by its western counterpart evoked a radical transformation process on a macro- and micro level that influenced the life of East Germans dramatically. Various recent publications mostly by German historians and sociologists analyse how the Wende (the German expression for the turn after November 1989) changed the life of East Germans.[8] At the macro-level were political, institutional and economic changes from a “one-party authoritarian rule to a pluralistic democratic government, from a paternalistic welfare state with full employment to a society with much higher real incomes but also a higher risk of unemployment and unequal life changes”.[9] Most importantly on a political level was the legitimation of the Wende by the East German population with the first free elections of the Peoples Chamber on the 18th of March 1990.[10] The systemic change involved the reconsideration of ideological terms from socialism to democracy and therefore the need to redefine state and personal identity. Economically, the creation of a free market economic system with the Deutsche Mark (D-Mark) as a unified currency, the Treuhandgesetz (Trusteeship Law) and the complete change of available consumer goods, prices and expected economic behaviour affected both the institutional and the private sphere of society. On a micro- level, lifestyle, cultural values, traditions and habits were questioned and the relatively stable life path of East Germans was left in flux.[11] Suddenly, the way people raised their children, the education system, work ethics and the everyday structures had to be revised and personal identity redefined.[12] Nevertheless, East Germans had preserved some traditions from the GDR, such as the Jugendweihe (youth consecration), the secular equivalent of the Confirmation in East Germany, until today. The changes on the macro- and micro level influenced each other and laid the foundations for changes to the lifestyles of East German citizens.

Every individual experienced the Wende differently depending on their experience of the former GDR regime, their association with the state and their position in society.[13] Those who were born during the Weimar Republic and influenced by the Hitler regime had already been pensioners after the reunification. Those born after the Second World War spent half of their life working in the GDR, and the generation born in the 1970s experienced the Wende mostly before they entered the labour market. Accounts of contemporary witnesses often indicate that those who had been openly critical of the system viewed the Wende as a positive transformation that created a liberal and free society. For others, the process was much more ambivalent. The free market system was overshadowed by unemployment and the newly available consumer goods were rendered more remote than they might have been by high prices and low wages. Accordingly, the transformation that should have ensured united social and economic structures in East and West Germany caused clashes between the two ideologies (capitalism and socialism), and influenced the way people reflect on the GDR today. Although the legal transformation was completed relatively quickly, the Mauer im Kopf (Wall in the head) remains until present time.[14] Therefore it becomes hard to generalise the impact of the Wende on personal lives of East Germans because members of society found a unique way to cope with their new reality based on their previous experiences.

On a macro-level, the transformation from an autocratic to a more democratic political system changed the participatory opportunities of East Germans dramatically. Although one Party led the GDR over the 41 years of its existence, the constitution provided for an ostensibly democratic system, when democracy is defined with the possibility for citizens to politically participate. GDR citizens were obliged to vote for different parties and candidates, but it was clear that the one-party state of the SED was not to be questioned. Contemporaries, such as Günther Ullmann, described the elections as “Lug und Trug” (Lie and fraud).[15] Others, such as Carola Müller, stated that they had never questioned the elections because they had never experienced another system before.[16] On December 1, 1989, the leading role of the SED was removed from the constitution and prominent party officials were either arrested or excluded from their former positions. More than 600,000 of the 2.3 million formal members of the party cancelled their membership.[17] The SED recreated itself as a new party, called the Party of Democratic Socialism (PDS). It was structurally similar to the old SED and many former staff members retained their positions in the new party. During the reunification negotiations the roundtable discussions, an initiative to discuss the transformation process with equal participants from different social groups, began in 1989. The Runder Tisch (round table) was used as a democratic instrument to ensure the participation of ordinary GDR citizens into the political process.[18] With a pluralistic party system and mechanisms for democratic participation East Germans experienced that they could freely express their opinions, which produced a major change in their political life.

The change from a socialistic, autocratic system to a parliamentary democracy resulted in the need to redefine national identity and the role of the state. In the GDR, the term national was ideologically defined as a “social-ethic community, in which the capitalistic nation and its antagonistic class contradiction is replaced by a stable community of befriended socialist classes.”[19] Propaganda portrayed the West as the enemy and the GDR community as the real German society. In the FRG, the nation was defined as a legitimate pluralistic- democratic system for all Germans.[20] Furthermore the state no longer exercised totalitarian power, by which it had sought to control every aspect of life. The storming of the Stasi (Ministry for State Security) central building in Berlin on the 15th of January began the process of curtailing Stasi activity.[21] Permanent surveillance thus disappeared, as did the police state. Scholars have published several studies to analyse the impact of the Wende on the identity of East German citizens.[22] Following the ALLBUS surveys they asserted that 61 percent of East Germans would consider themselves more as East Germans than as Germans in 1992. In 2009 still 43 per cent describe their identity as East German. Therefore former GDR citizens, who had been used to a great state influence on their personal lives, needed to adapt another ideological system of the FRG after the transformation.[23]

After November 1989, the way East Germans conceptualised money and thought of themselves as economic actors fundamentally changed. An essential part of economic recovery was the creation of a common currency, which was officially introduced with the Vertrag über die Schaffung einer Währungs-, Wirtschafts- und Sozialunion (Treaty for the creation of a currency, economic and social union)[24] signed by deputies from East and West Germany on the 18th of May 1990. This made it possible to exchange and access western consumer goods. When the treaty came into effect on the 1th of July 1990, the D-Mark was introduced in the former GDR.[25] The rapid economic transformation is controversial among scholars who discuss its advantages and disadvantages.[26] The “transition from a centrally planned command economy to an economy with a large private sector governed by market forces”[27] including a changing labour and commodity market had the aim of ending the isolation of the East German market and of ensuring a common economic strategy. The enthusiasm about West German goods was one reason for the speed of the economic transformation. However, from an economic standpoint, Rüdiger Pohl judges this process negatively because the hasty introduction of the D-Mark abandoned the stimulus effect of the exchange course for East German exports.[28] Liberalised prices, the competition of goods and “effective corporate governance for financial institutions and non-financial business under private ownership” had to be established rapidly.[29] The new capitalistic marked required less involvement by the state, resulting in fewer subsidises and less social security. In the GDR, prices for basic consumer goods, flats and industrial buildings had been highly subsidised by the state, because the production costs had not been the main criterion to measure economic success.[30] Therefore the capitalistic consumer market required a different economic behaviour. East Germans, unused to the way businesses were sometimes run in the West, would pay unrealistic prices for products or get cheated.[31] A contemporary witness, Erwin Müller, explains “everything was new to us, there have been many “black sheep” in the market, who tried to sell us anything just to make money.” [32] The fast change to the D-Mark and to the western economy reshaped the way East Germans had previously thought about their economic position in the GDR and caused uncertainty and confusion.

Many East Germans had not envisioned their economic management to be ineffective and inefficient, which seemed to be what the West cared about as the planned economy was dismantled. On June 17, 1990 the Volkskammer (People’s Chamber) of the GDR introduced a new law to ensure the privatisation of East German enterprises.[33] The Treuhandanstalt (Trusteeship institution), an agency that was active between 1990 and 2004 managed the privatisation of state enterprise sector and all non-financial enterprises. Already in 1990, the Treuhandanstalt was responsible for 8,500 East German enterprises. The rapid privatisation of the economy enabled outside investors to restructure East German enterprises with the necessary resources and know-how in finance and management. Thus they ensured their survival in the new market environment. In 1994, West Germans and foreigners owed almost three-quarters of newly created private enterprises.[34] During the course of this transformation many of these companies were widely seen as loss-makers. For this reason, the reorganisation process involved “labour shedding, changes in internal organisation, the spinning off of non-core activities including social assets, the closure of non-viable units, capital investment and equipment modernisation.”[35] In other words, East German enterprises went through a process of modernisation that attempted to refine them into viable businesses in the new economic landscape. For the East German left-wing intellectual Heiner Müller, this was a process of “subjugation”.[36] A great discourse about the role and impact of the Treuhandanstalt currently develops among mostly German scholars.[37] Overall, the Wende caused East Germans to require new training in company management to ensure competitiveness in global markets, but both companies and individuals struggled to cope with the new requirements.

The process of restructuring the economic system created large unemployment and caused the social exclusion, which East Germans had rarely experienced previously.[38] During the lifetime of the GDR, full employment was ensured but the wages had been low. Many East Germans hoped the economic transformation would involve the same level of prosperity and job prospects, which they imagined West Germans had. After the stagnation of the GDR economy in the 1980s, the Wende created hope for a better life.[39] Because of 14.4 per cent of unemployment already in 1992, some East Germans were disappointed.[40] In the oral history collection Mein land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende (2009), the employment situation is a widely discussed topic among the participants. Hans Schneider, an East German engineer, explains that regardless of whether people had been engineers or sales assistance, no one was certain about their work future.[41] East Germans not only became unemployed because of staff-reductions in enterprises, but also because their degrees became worthless. Christine Ott stated that the complicated process of recognition for study certificates was convoluted. All her certificates in economic studies were rejected and, therefore she could not finish her PhD at the end of 1990.[42] Bernd Henning describes that many companies had to be kept running for five years to try to reintegrate them into the new market economy, but these attempts were often unsuccessful. He also points out that East Germans never learned how to handle the fear of unemployment and exclusion from the labour market during the GDR time.[43] Examples of individuals who started a successful carrier in the unified east show the positive side of the development. Jakob Arnold, for instance, got an offer to work as the deputy of a bus company where he had worked previously as a bus driver in the summer of 1990.[44] Furthermore the Ministry of Economic Affairs regularly publishes reports stating that the long-term economic impact of the transformation was positive.[45] Because of the ambivalent process of economic transformation, many East Germans see the West still as an Ausbeuterstaat (State of Exploitation). [46] Although a great variety of goods was available after reunification, contemporaries reported that they were still not able to buy what they wished because they lacked enough money to afford such a luxury. As a result of the sudden changes of economic structures and the stark reality of unemployment, many East Germans became frustrated with the transformation and lost their positive attitude towards the allure of Western capitalism.

Through the experience of unemployment, many East Germans realised the unpredictability of their own life and the necessity to actively make decisions to ensure stability for themselves and their families. Under the GDR the Wohlfahrtsdiktatur (Welfare dictatorship)[47] guaranteed social stability, employment and low prices for basic living necessities. Due to high subsidises, poverty was rarely experienced, especially for people with children or for those that were capable of work. Small rents, energy costs and low rates for basic food and clothing ensured families were able to survive with relatively little money.[48] Because of the high unemployment rate and low wages in the East, many East Germans made use of their travel opportunities and worked partly in the western parts of the country.[49] Even today it is possible to earn on average 25 per cent more in the same occupation in the old federal states than in the new ones.[50]. In 2001, 300,000 East Germans worked during the week in West Germany but kept their homes in the East.[51] These changes that the East Germans went through to meet the expectations of the western world and to ensure economic comfort in life, made many East Germans move to work in the West, but caused them feel ostracised by their Western counterparts.[52]

The behavioural code that East Germans learned during the GDR time to ensure a successful job changed fundamentally after November 1989. The notion of self-realization through efficiency did not exist in the GDR because party loyalty and adherence to a strict behavioural code led to success.[53] Erwin Brand explains that he made an extended commitment to serve for the NVA in order to study his favourite subject afterwards.[54] Furthermore, committed party work and political conformance resulted in favours, such as lower rents and extended holidays.[55] Efficiency and performance was in the GDR seen as a contribution to collective property and prosperity, but not as an individual aim.[56] Likewise wage and appreciation for different occupations varied from those in West Germany. In the GDR an engineer or teacher earned less money then a bricklayer or roofer. For this reason, blue-collar workers were hit much harder after the reunification than white-collar employees.[57] After reunification, these old societal structures, which ensured job prospects for workers, no longer existed.

After November 1989, East German women were confronted with a different role in society because in the GDR women generally would work and have a family to take care of at the same time, while in the West women with families largely stayed at home. In the GDR, women were equal and necessary workers. For this reason they had been fully integrated into the labour market, although they did not take leading positions. Women’s employment alongside motherhood was accepted and a major part of the self-perception of East German females. In West Germany, the model of the male breadwinner and the female homemaker was the dominant model especially in the 1960s, but remained prominent in the 1990s.[58] These differences of attitude are still present in east and west German society, as many east German women try to preserve their former role in society. The transformation of gender roles in the newly united Germany demanded that women reflect on their identity based on their ideological background.

The East German childcare support system alongside with the general social security system that had been run by the GDR state changed with the reunification, forcing a reconfiguration of family budgets which caused uncertainty within East German families. The soviet military administration introduced in 1947 the Einheitsversicherung (national insurance) that did not, like in West Germany, include separate classes of insurance.[59] Childcare facilities had been designed to enable parents to work in addition to raising their children. The Kinderkrippen (an equivalent to the kindergarten) already took care of babies a few weeks after birth and was highly subsidized by the state. After the age of four, children went to the kindergarten, where a place was ensured for every child and it was free of charge. In contrast, West German families had to pay for child-care and the infrastructure was more oriented towards the mother as a housewife. Following reunification the West German childcare system as an illustration of social security was introduced in East Germany. State responsibility was replaced by personal responsibility with a wide selection of insurance options. [60] Furthermore, childcare costs had to met from the household budget. The structures of families had also differed between the East and the West. In East Germany, marriage was less connected to mother- and fatherhood.[61] Almost half of the children who were born in the 1980s were born in unmarried families.[62] When it came to a divorce or a break up of a relationship, the GDR state financially supported single-motherhood. As state support for single-mothers was limited after the reunification, single-mothers were identified as the group most at risk of social exclusion in reunified Germany.[63] The resultant sense of uncertainty resulted in a dramatic decrease of the birth rate in East Germany after 1989.[64] The West German social security system that was adopted after the reunification provided more selection options, but fewer benefits and resulted in uncertainty of how money should be allocated to ensure the stability of the family situation.

After the Wende, central institutions created by the SED such as the Freie Deutsche Jugend (Free German Youth), which had influenced and structured the life of an average East German citizen, ceased to exist; the education system changed completely and former traditions such as the Jugendweihe lost their political significance. Within the first year of reunification the newly created federal states were obliged to create a new educational curriculum. The challenge was to connect the new system with that of the former GDR. Especially in the teaching of history, ideological statements and special emphasis on certain periods or events, for example the Russian Revolution in 1917, have been dominant.[65] Education in schools and in various state associations ensured ideological conformity and planned the path for every citizen.[66] Although the historian Anna Saunders shows that in 1989 only 20 per cent of youth felt attached to the SED and the FDJ, the structural function of the association was still an important determining factor in their lives. Within the community, activities that were organized for leisure time, such as hiking, camping, singing and youth projects, played a more central role than political orientation.[67] Traditions such as the Jugendweihe or the Sandmännchen, a children’s bedtime television, remain important in the life of East Germans. The Jugendweihe lost its meaning as a political instrument through time and served increasingly as a family event. Therefore, it was easier to remove its political connotations after reunification.[68]

Given that East Germany developed as a separate country for forty years, GDR citizens acquired their own cultural characteristics, which they identified as different from those of their West German counterpart. This separate sense of identity survived the reunification. Nevertheless, there was a shift towards individualism and this entailed social differentiation, inequality, efficiency, participation and self-determination. This was reflected in the Freie Körper Kultur (Free Body Culture), FKK, which was a major part of tourism, especially in the later years of the GDR. In private spaces and during holidays on the see, many East Germans used the “small freedom” and tolerance to enjoy the sun naked.[69] After the reunification many West German tourists who came to the Baltic Sea started a great debate about the nature of FKK in the press. Those cultural clashes replicated in many areas of life. Even on a micro-level, the small differences between East and West Germans that caused cultural clashes, misunderstandings and uncertainty had an impact on the way East Germans continued their life after the Wende.

After November 1989, all aspects of East Germans life changed dramatically with the transformation to a western society. On a macro-level, the institutional changes in the social, political and economic fields materialised very quickly after November 1989. The impact of the macro-level changes on the lifestyle of East Germans caused enthusiasm; disappointment also emerged, however, especially with regard to the economic changes. Unemployment, uncertainty and unpredictability were major parts of a transformation process that continues even today. On a micro-level, a cultural shift developed, which made East Germans realize that “West Germans were foreigners” who just coincidentally “speak the same language”.[70] The changes in the life of East Germans mentioned above are just one part of various other transformation processes that took place after November 1989 in every individual life of East Germans. The absence of a balanced public discourse about the transformation process and impact on the life of East Germans can be explained with recent character of events. Further research should aim to encourage former GDR citizens to talk about their experiences. Moreover, the transformation process is not yet complete. The Mauer im Kopf still exists both in West and East Germany. The Wende and the dramatic changes in the life of East Germans need to become a major part of public discourse about recent German history that involves acknowledging the fact that East Germans need more time to adapt to a system that differs from their previous experiences on a ideological, economic, political, institutional and cultural level.

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Müller, Heiner. „Now it’s all just Unity Pabulum“. Dramatist Heiner Müller on Intellectuals and the Decline of the GDR, in: Der Spiegel (July 30, 1990), http://germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org/sub_document.cfm?document_id=3017&language=english last accessed 28 Nov. 2013.

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Endnotes:

[1] A detailed description of the press conference can be read at Hans Herman Hertle, Die Berliner Mauer – Monument des Kalten Krieges/ The Berlin Wall – Monument of the Cold War (Berlin 2007), pp. 146-148.

[2] Ulrich Mählert, Kleine Geschichte der DDR, edn. 5 (Munich 2007), p. 175.

[3] Wolfgang Schäuble, Der Vertrag. Wie ich über die deutsche Einheit verhandelte, with an introduction by Dirk Koch and Klaus Wirtgen (Stuttgart 1991), p. 21. Beside the Einheitsvertrag, the France, Great Britain, the United States and the Soviet Union discussed the “Two Plus Four Treaty” which guaranteed the full sovereignty of the newly created unified German state.

[4] Vertrag zwischen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland und der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik über die Herstellung der Einheit Deutschlands, in: Bundesgesetzblatt [BGBI] 2 (1990), pp. 885 – 1247.

[5] Mählert, Kleine Geschichte der DDR, p. 177.

[6] Schäuble, Der Vertrag. Wie ich über die deutsche Einheit verhandelte, p. 131.

[7] Hester Vaizey, Born in the GDR. Living in the Shadow of the Wall, p. 12. This assumption is confirmed by various scholars for instance Eva Kolinsky, Social Transformation and the Family in Post- Communist Germany (New York, 1998).

[8] A specific area of research was initiiated at the University of Leipzig. The results were published in 2012, Heinrich Best/ Everhard Holtmann (ed.), Aufbruch der entsicherten Gesellschaft. Deutschland nach der Wiedervereinigung (Frankfurt am Main, 2012).

[9] Martin Diewald, Anne Goedicke and Karl Ulrich Mayer, After the Fall of the Wall. Life Courses in the Transformation of East Germany (Stanford, 2006), p.1.

[10] Heins, The Wall falls. An Oral History of the Reunification of the Two Germanies, p. 252. The Christian Democratic Party won the elections with 48,8 per cent which was seen as a positive vote by the GDR population for a reunified Germany.

[11] Axel Knoblich/Antonio Peter/Erik Natter, Auf dem Weg zu einer gesamtdeutschen Identität (Köln 1993), p. 7.

[12] Ellen Sanow, „Dir wurde nichts mehr in den Schoß gelegt“, in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.), Mein Land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009) p. 150.

[13] Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.), Mein Land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), p. 195.

[14] Peter E. Quint, The Imperfect Union: Constitutional Structures of German Reunification (Princeton, 1997), p. 3.

[15] Günter Ullmann, “Ich wollte bleiben und Zeitzeuge sein” in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.), Mein Land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), p. 91.

[16] Carola Müller, „Es war halt ein Experiment, was leider Gottes schief gegangen ist“, in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.), Mein Land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), p. 123.

[17] Mählert, Kleine Geschichte der DDR, p. 169.

[18] Ibid., p. 170.

[19] Günther Großer/ Rolf Reißig/ Gerhard Wolter (Ed.), Wissenschaftlicher Sozialismus (Berlin, 1988), p. 339. Original version: „eine sozialethische Gemeinschaft, in welcher an die Stelle des die kapitalistische Nation prägenden antagonistischen Klassengegensatzes eine stabile Gemeinschaft befreundeter sozialistischer Klassen und Schichten getreten ist“

[20] Knoblich/ Peter/ Natter, Wie sehen sich die Deutschen selbst? Empirisches Material aus Ost- und Westdeutschland, p. 32.

[21] Mählert, Kleine Geschichte der DDR, p. 170.

[22] Thomas Ahbe, Die Ostdeutsche Erinnerung als Eisberg. Soziologische und diskursanalytische Befunde nach 20 Jahren staatlicher Einheit, in: Elisa Goudin – Steinmann/ Carola Hähnel-Mesnard (ed.), Ostdeutsche Erinnerungsdiskurse nach 1989. Narrative kultureller Identität (Berlin 2013), p. 29.

[23] In the article East German identity in the GDR, Joanna McKay portrays the „multi-layered national and state identities“ of East Germans in: Jonathan Grix/ Paul Cooke/ Lothar Funk, The new Germany in Context. East German distinctiveness in a unified Germany (Birmingham, 2002), pp. 15-31.

[24] Vertrag zur Schaffung einer Währungs-, Wirtschafts- und Sozialunion zwischen der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik und der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, in: Bundesgesetzblatt [BGBI] II (1990) pp. 537-567.

[25] Mählert, Kleine Geschichte der DDR, p. 180.

[26] See for example Flockton, Chris/ Kolinski, Eva: Recasting East Germany: Social Transformation after the GDR (London, 1999) who collected essays discussing the social consequences of the economic development. Furthermore Raj Kollmorgen, Frank Thomas Koch and Hans Luidger Daniel find an discursive approach on the German unity by analysing critically the economic transformation in the book publication Diskurse der deutschen Einheit. Kritik und Alternativen (Wiesbaden, 2011). This topic is mostly discussed in social science and among economists.

[27] Martin Diewald/Anne Goedicke/Karl Ulrich Mayer, After the Fall of the Wall. Life Courses in the Transformation of East Germany (Stanford, 2006), p.1.

[28] Rüdiger Pohl, Ostdeutschland im 12. Jahr nach der Vereinigung. Eine Bilanz der wirtschaftlichen Transformation, in: Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte (2002), Vol. 37-38, p. 36.

[29] Wendy Carlin, The New East Germany Economy. Problems of Transition, Unification and Institutional Mismatch, in: Chris Flockton/ Eva Kolinksy, Recasting East Germany: Social Transformation after the GDR (London, 1999), p. 16.

[30] Rüdiger Pohl, Ostdeutschland im 12. Jahr nach der Vereinigung. Eine Bilanz der wirtschaftlichen Transformation, p. 30.

[31] Heins, The Wall falls. An Oral History of the Reunification of the Two Germanies, p. 269.

[32] Brand, „Es gab einige Reibereien, aber da musste man durch“, p 85, (own translation: Es war ja alles neu. Und außerdem gab es viele schwarze Schafe auf dem Markt, die dann versucht haben einem irgendwas anzudrehen und nur um Kohle zu machen.)

[33] Vertrag zur Schaffung einer Währungs-, Wirtschafts- und Sozialunion zwischen der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik und der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, in: Bundesgesetzblatt [BGBI] II (1990) pp. 537-567. The treaty was formally replaced by the „Einheitsvertrag“, Vertrag zwischen der Bundesrepublik Deutschland und der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik über die Herstellung der Einheit Deutschlands, Bundesgesetzblatt [BGBI] 2 (1990), pp. 885 – 1247 in 1990.

[34] Carlin, The New East Germany Economy. Problems of Transition, Unification and Institutional Mismatch, p. 19.

[35]Ibid., p. 17.

[36] Heiner Müller, „Now it’s all just Unity Pabulum“. Dramatist Heiner Müller on Intellectuals and the Decline of the GDR, in: Der Spiegel (July 30, 1990), http://germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org/sub_document.cfm?document_id=3017&language=english last accessed 28 Nov. 2013.

[37] Especially in recent years various publications discussed the negative effect of the Treuhandanstalt on East German economy, for example Klaus Boers, Ursula Nelles, Hans Theile (ed.): Wirtschaftskriminalität und die Privatisierung der DDR-Betriebe (Baden-Baden, 2010).

[38] Fred Klinger, Der Transformationsschock. Wirtschaftliche und soziale Entwicklungen nach der „Wende“, in: Ralf Altenhof, Eckard Jesse (ed.): Das wiedervereinigte Deutschland. Zwischenbilanz und Perspektiven (Düsseldorf, 1995), p. 182.

[39] Fulbrook, The People’s State, East German Society from Hitler to Honecker (New Haven, 2005), p. 231.

[40] Statistisches Bundesamt, Arbeitsmarkt, https://www.destatis.de/DE/ZahlenFakten/Indikatoren/LangeReihen/Arbeitsmarkt/lrarb003.html last accessed 2 Dec. 2013.

[41] Hans Schneider explains how 3000 apprentices and many engineers became unemployed when the company Zeiss, which was mostly a armaments company reduce their stuff due to economic reasons, Hans Schneider, “Es ist lächerlich, wenn man heute daran denkt, aber es war so”, in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.), Mein Land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), p. 77.

[42] Christine Ott, „Ich habe die Leichtigkeit des Seins verloren, aber meinen eigenen Weg gefunden“, in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.): Mein Land verschwindet so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), 40-53.

[43] Bernd Henning, „Ich dachte, im Westen scheint immer die Sonne“, p. 116.

[44] Jakob Arnold, „…da wurde ganz einfach die Fassade weggezogen.“, in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.): Mein Land verschwindet so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), pp. 21-30.

[45] Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Technologie, Wirtschaftsdaten Neue Bundesländer, August 2013, http://www.bmi.bund.de/SharedDocs/Downloads/DE/Themen/Politik_Gesellschaft/wf-wirtschaftsdaten-neue-laender_2012.pdf?__blob=publicationFile last accessed 5 Dec. 2013.

[46] Brand, „Es gab einige Reibereien, aber da musste man durch“, p. 86.

[47] Konrad H. Jarausch describes the GDR as a welfare dictatorship in his publication Dictatorship as Experience. Towards a Socio-Cultural History of the GDR (New York, 1999) the first time and was followed by several scholars who used the term for their future research on the GDR.

[48] Kolinsky, Social Transformation and the Family in Post- Communist Germany, p. 213.

[49] Pohl, Ostdeutschland im 12. Jahr nach der Vereinigung. Eine Bilanz der wirtschaftlichen Transformation, p. 37.

[50] The Federal Statistical Office of Germany published in 2010 a report on the economic development 20 years after the reunification. For further information about the report see Reuters, Die Einkommensunterschiede wachsen, in: Die Zeit (8.12.2010), www.zeit.de/wirtschaft/2010-12/einkommen-schwere-ostdeutschland last accessed 4 Dec. 2013. For further information about the development of East and West Germany see the comparative study of Insa Cassens/ Marc Luy/ Rembrand Scholz (ed.), Die Bevölkerung in Ost- und Westdeutschland. Demografische, gesellschaftliche und wirtschaftliche Entwicklungen seit der Wende (Wiesbaden, 2009).

[51] Pohl, Ostdeutschland im 12. Jahr nach der Vereinigung. Eine Bilanz der wirtschaftlichen Transformation, p. 31.

[52] Ibid., p. 38.

[53] Fulbrook, The peoples State, p. 121.

[54] Erwin Brand, „Es gab einige Reibereien, aber da musste man durch“, in: Agnés Arp/ Annette Leo (ed.), Mein Land verschwand so schnell…16 Lebensgeschichten und die Wende 1989/90 (Weimar, 2009), pp. 79-86.

[55] Fulbrook, The people’s State, p. 238.

[56] Heiner Meulemann, Werte und Wertewandel: zur Identität einer geteilten und wieder vereinten Nation (Weinheim, 1996), p. 338

[57] Roland Sturm, Nicht in einer Generation zu erreichen. Die Angleichung der Lebensverhältnisse, in: Ralf Altenhof, Eckard Jesse (ed.): Das wiedervereinigte Deutschland. Zwischenbilanz und Perspektiven (Düsseldorf, 1995), p. 209.

[58] Kolinsky, Social Transformation and the Family in Post- Communist Germany, p. 207.

[59] Manfred Schmidt, Sozialpolitik der DDR (Wiesbaden, 2004), p. 35.

[60] Kolinsky, Social Transformation and the Family in Post- Communist Germany, p. 213.

[61] Ibid., p. 211.

[62] Thomas Gensicke, Vom Staatsbewußtsein zur Oppositions-Ideologie. DDR- Identität im vereinten Deutschland, p. 49.

[63] Kolinsky, Social Transformation and the Family in Post- Communist Germany, p. 211.

[64] BMfSFJ (Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend), Geburten und Geburtenverhalten in Deutschland (September 2012), http://www.bmfsfj.de/RedaktionBMFSFJ/Abteilung2/Pdf-Anlagen/Geburten-und-geburtenverhalten-in-D,property=pdf,bereich=bmfsfj,sprache=de,rwb=true.pdf, last accessed 5 Dec. 2013, p. 5.

[65] Anna Saunders, Hocker’s Children. Youth and patriotism in East(ern) Germany, 1979 – 2002 ( p. 52.

[66] Mary Fulbrook, The People’s State, p. 128.

[67] Mark Fenemore, Sex, Thugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll: teenage rebels in Cold-War East Germany (New York, 2007), p. 101.

[68] Saunders, Honecker’s Children, p. 94.

[69] Judith Kruse, “Nische im Sozialismus”, in Endlich Urlaub! Die Deutschen reisen (Bonn, 1996), p. 111.

[70] Vaizey, Born in the GDR, p. 14.

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