What is the price of memory, and what is the cost of solidarity? In this conversation, different perspectives on German unification and its implications for migrant, internationalist, and GDR-related cultures of remembrance are examined. While the hegemonic narrative speaks of the unification of two parts of one nation that belonged together, some contract workers, students, and artists in the GDR experienced unification as a catastrophe. Some individuals were expropriated and deported, families were torn apart, and former comrades turned against each other. And yet the idea of international solidarity remained in the form of traces left on the facades of buildings in the countries of the returnees, or morphed into disappointment and silence in the families of those affected. The question of how a society deals with difference—and how such difference is negotiated—always concerns cultures of remembrance. 

How can the histories of the GDR—taking into account ambivalent memories, personal entanglements, enforced migration, and prevailing national narratives——be preserved? How can these histories enrich current discourses and react to its contradictions?

On the occasion of Echos der Bruderländer, Dito Tembe, Patrice G. Poutrus, Lucía Muriel, and Peggy Piesche discuss a global history of the GDR in its ambivalences as well as personal, cultural, and psychological entanglements.