Sounds a really interesting read and still highly relevant to understanding German attitudes today.
Described by the publishers as ‘a ground-breaking classic of post-war German literature’, Siblings is the first of Brigitte Reimann’s novels to be translated into English, and what an interesting rediscovery it is – bold, edgy and evocative with a style all of its own! Originally published in Germany in 1963, the novel is narrated by Elisabeth Arendt, a young, idealistic painter whose steadfast beliefs in the possibility of building an egalitarian socialist future in the GDR bring her into conflict with her beloved older brother, Uli, a disillusioned engineer.
Set in 1960, before the construction of the Berlin Wall, the novel is bookended by snippets from the same conservation between the siblings, giving the narrative a circular feel. While Elisabeth is determined to fashion a fulfilling life for herself in the East, Uli feels constrained by the Party structures and ways of working, fuelling his desire to defect to the…
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