Siblings by Brigitte Reimann


Julie’s review;

A really enjoyable and interesting read, published in German in 1963, this first English translation provides  a fascinating insight into family loyalties and East/West tensions.

A unique situation yet this semi-autobiographical writing has a wonderful contemporary feel as it explores the dilemma between political ideology and individual aspirations.

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1960. The border between East and West Germany has closed. For Elisabeth – a young painter – the GDR is her generation’s chance to build a glorious, egalitarian socialist future. For her brother Uli, it is a place of stricture and oppression. Separating them is the ever-wider chasm of the party line; over them loom the twin spectres of opportunity and fear, and the shadow of their defector brother Konrad. In prose as bold as a scarlet paint stroke, Brigitte Reimann battles with the clash of idealism and suppression, familial loyalty and desire. The result is this ground-breaking classic of post-war East German literature.

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