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Twenty Years of Peaceful Revolution

Interviews & video production
Robert Havemann Society, 2009

At the heart of the exhibition lie the citizens of the GDR, who woke from the governmental enforced hypnosis in 1989, overcame their fears, and took charge of their own fate. They forced state politicians to take action and “made history”. Starting with only a few people, the opposition movement soon turned into a broad grassroots force. An ever-increasing number of people refused to accept the state of hopelessness, decline, and stagnation and demanded their right to travel and hold free elections. Citizens’ movements and new parties sprang up. Hundreds of thousands bravely took to the streets. It was the end of the GDR and the first step towards German reunification.

Dr. Anne Roerkohl interviewed all of the contemporary witnesses presented in the exhibition. Among them, well-known GDR civil rights activists such as Marianne Birthler, Rainer Eppelmann, Markus Meckel, and Ulrike Poppe.

The largest challenge lay in editing the gripping, several hours of interview footage down to 15-minute videos suitable for an exhibition.

The visitors’ interest was so strong that the exhibition on Alexanderplatz was extended for half a year.

For more information: Robert-Havemann-Gesellschaft e.V.

Visitor at the exhibition
Media station with interviews of the civil rights activists
Chancellor Angela Merkel at the exhibition, 2009
Visitor at the exhibition