Portal:East Germany

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East Germany Portal
Portal:East Germany
People's Theatre, BerlinBerlin WallTrabant40th anniversary in 1989
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The East Germany portal offers an overview of the most important and newest articles on the subject of East Germany, the former Communist state officially known as the German Democratic Republic or GDR The portal contains links to a cross-section of articles from the areas of history and politics, geography and economy, art and culture, and some of the important personalities from the region.

East Germany, officially the German Democratic Republic (GDR; German: Deutsche Demokratische Republik [ˈdɔʏtʃə demoˈkʁaːtɪʃə ʁepuˈbliːk], DDR), was a country that existed from 1949 to 1990, when the eastern portion of Germany was part of the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. It described itself as a socialist "workers' and peasants' state", and the territory was administered and occupied by Soviet forces at the end of World War II — the Soviet Occupation Zone of the Potsdam Agreement, bounded on the east by the Oder–Neisse line. The Soviet zone surrounded West Berlin but did not include it; as a result, West Berlin remained outside the jurisdiction of the GDR.

The German Democratic Republic was established in the Soviet zone, while the Federal Republic was established in the three western zones. East Germany was a satellite state of the Soviet Union. Soviet occupation authorities began transferring administrative responsibility to German communist leaders in 1948, and the GDR began to function as a state on 7 October 1949. However, Soviet forces remained in the country throughout the Cold War. Until 1989, the GDR was governed by the Socialist Unity Party (SED), though other parties nominally participated in its alliance organisation, the National Front of Democratic Germany. The SED made the teaching of Marxism–Leninism and the Russian language compulsory in schools.

Geography and nature
East German administrative divisions or Bezirke

The German Democratic Republic, which consisted geographically of what is now eastern Germany, had an area of 107,771 km2 (41,610 mi2), bordering Czechoslovakia in the south, West Germany in the south and west, the Baltic Sea to the north, and Poland in the east.

Much of the territory of the former East Germany lay on the North German Plain and was largely flat and agricultural apart from low morainic hills left by the ice age. However in the south the land rose to the Ore Mountains and Elbe Sandstone Mountains that formed the border with its Communist neighbour, Czechoslovakia.

Administration divisions (Bezirke): BerlinCottbusDresdenErfurtFrankfurt (Oder)GeraHalleKarl-Marx-StadtLeipzigMagdeburgNeubrandenburgPotsdamRostockSchwerinSuhl

Cities and towns: AltenburgApoldaBautzenBrandenburg/HavelCottbusDessauDresdenEberswaldeEisenachStalinstadt/EisenhüttenstadtErfurtFrankfurt (Oder)FreibergGeraGörlitzGothaGreifswaldHalberstadtHalleHalle-NeustadtHoyerswerdaJenaChemnitz/Karl-Marx-StadtLeipzigMagdeburgMerseburgNeubrandenburgPlauenPotsdamRostockSchwedtSchwerinStralsundSuhlWeimarWismarWittenbergZittauZwickau

Rivers and canals: ElbeGera - HavelNeißeOderSaaleSpreeUnstrutWhite ElsterBlack ElsterMittelland CanalWerra

Waterbodies: MüritzSchweriner SeePlauer SeeKummerower SeeScharmützelseeWerbellinseeGroßer MüggelseeBay of GreifswaldOderhaff

Islands: RügenPoelUsedomHiddenseeGreifswalder Oie

Mountain and hill ranges: Ore MountainsHarzElbe Sandstone MountainsThuringian ForestThuringian HighlandVogtlandKyffhäuserRhönZittau Mountains

Regions: Dresden Elbe ValleyLusatiaSpreewaldMecklenburg Lake DistrictBarnimFlämingMagdeburg BördeAltmarkSaxon SwitzerlandEichsfeld


History, politics and religion
Border installations at Marienborn

History: 1953 UprisingDachaFour Power Agreement on BerlinBasic Treaty, 1972Permanent representativePalace of the RepublicBegrüßungsgeld

GDR border: Treaty of ZgorzelecBerlin WallInner German borderBorder crossingsBerlin Friedrichstraße stationCheckpoint CharlieMarienborn border crossingSpring-gunRepublikfluchtMindestumtausch

Die Wende: Monday demonstrationsSocial Democratic Party1990 General ElectionTreuhandTwo Plus Four AgreementReunification (Einigungsvertrag)Stasi Records AgencyOstalgie

Logo of the Socialist Unity Party (SED)

Politics: State flagNational EmblemNational hymnConstitutionVolkskammer (People's Chamber)State CouncilCouncil of MinistersNational FrontSocialist Unity PartyBloc partyChristian Democratic UnionLiberal Democratic PartyDemocratic Farmers' PartyNational Democratic PartyAdministrative divisions (Bezirke)

"Mass organisations": Free German YouthFree German Trade Union FederationCultural Association of the GDRDemocratic Women's League of GermanyPeople's SolidaritySociety for German–Soviet FriendshipErnst Thälmann Pioneer Organisation

Armed bodies: National People's ArmyBorder TroopsSchießbefehlStasiHauptverwaltung Aufklärung (Main Directorate for Reconnaissance)VolkspolizeiCombat GroupsVolksmarineArmeegeneralMarshalWarsaw PactConstruction soldier

Other orders: Orders, decorations, and medals of East GermanyBanner of LabourOrder of Karl MarxNational Prize of the German Democratic RepublicScharnhorst OrderStar of People's FriendshipBlücher Order

Dresden's Roman Catholic Cathedral (the Hofkirche) at night

Religion: Evangelical Church in Berlin, Brandenburg and Silesian Upper LusatiaEvangelical Lutheran Church of MecklenburgPomeranian Evangelical ChurchEvangelical Church of the Church Province of SaxonyEvangelical Lutheran Church in ThuringiaRoman Catholic Archdiocese of BerlinRoman Catholic Diocese of Dresden-MeissenRoman Catholic Diocese of ErfurtRoman Catholic Diocese of GörlitzRoman Catholic Diocese of Magdeburg


Education, culture and sport
DD-Schloss-gp.jpg

Education and science: Education in East GermanyAcademy of Sciences of the German Democratic RepublicCharitéHumboldt University of BerlinErweiterte OberschulePolytechnic Secondary SchoolTierpark BerlinMuttiheft

Language: GermanBerlinerischSorbian

Culture: Culture of East GermanyClassical Weimar

Art: Theater am SchiffbauerdammSemperoper

Architecture: Bauhaus World Heritage Site - Fernsehturm Berlin - Krämerbrücke - Plattenbau - Prora

Music: List of classical composersOstrock

Film: DEFADEFA Film Library - Kino International - List of films set in Berlin

Places of interest: Dresden CastleSanssouciDessau-Wörlitz Garden Realm

Cathedrals and churches: Berlin CathedralErfurt CathedralNaumburg Cathedral

Gdr homekit.gif

Museums and collections: DDR Museum - German Hygiene Museum - Museum IslandOld Synagogue (Erfurt) - Pergamon Museum - Stasi Museum - Tränenpalast

Sport: List of football clubsGDR Football AssociationDDR-OberligaFDGB-Pokal1. FC Union BerlinBerliner FC DynamoDynamo DresdenFC Carl Zeiss JenaRed Bull Arena


East German people
Erich Mielke, Head of the Stasi

Politicians: BenjaminBergmann-PohlBöhmeDertingerDieckmannFechnerGerlachGöttingG. GysiHagerH. HoffmannTh. HoffmannE. HoneckerM. HoneckerKeßlerKrackKrenzde MaizièreMaleudaMielkeMittagModrowNeumannNordenSchabowskiSchalck-GolodkowskiSindermannStophTischUlbrichtVernerM. WolfWollweberZaisser

Opposition and resistance: BahroBiermannM. BirthlerBohleyBrüsewitzEppelmannFuchsFührerGauckHavemannUllmann

Scientists: von Ardenne

Artists, playwrights, poets, writers: Andersen NexøBaierlBrechtBuschEscheHacksHeymKantH. MüllerNollPlenzdorfAnna SeghersStrittmatterTübkeWeigelChr. WolfWomacka

Athletes: CierpinskiEmmrichGeyerHoppeLanghammerLaserRecknagelSammerTäve SchurSieglSparwasserStreichWeißflogWitt


Economy and transport
An East German Deutsche Reichsbahn express locomotive, the Class 01.5

Finance: MindestumtauschForum checkEast German markStaatsbank

Cuisine: BroilerKetwurstSoljanka

Media: Censorship in East Germany

Newspapers and magazines: Berliner ZeitungNeues DeutschlandJunge WeltDer MorgenSputnikMosaikFRÖSI

Radio: Rundfunk der DDRBerliner RundfunkRadio DDR 1Radio DDR 2DeutschlandsenderRadio Berlin InternationalDT64

Television: Fernsehen der DDRAktuelle KameraSandmännchenDer schwarze Kanal

Cinema and films: DEFASolo SunnyDie Legende von Paul und PaulaTraces of StonesBear Ye One Another's Burden

Postal: Deutsche Post of the GDR

Justice: Brandenburg-Görden Prison

Transport: AlexanderplatzKarl-Marx-AlleeBarkasInterflugReichsbahnRoburTrabantWartburg

Economy: Genex - Industrieverband Fahrzeugbau (IFA)IntershopCombineLeipzig Trade FairLandwirtschaftliche Produktionsgenossenschaft (LPG)MinolORWOPentaconPlanned economy - PrakticaComeconVEB RobotronKombinat Mikroelektronik Erfurt - SDAG WismutTreuhandVolkseigener Betrieb (VEB)Public property



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Image of the month
Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R0518-182, Erich Honecker.jpg
Erich Honecker, leader of East Germany from 1971 until the fall of the wall in 1989. more...


Article of the month
Berlin- Bundestag by the Spree - 3570.jpg

The Spree is a river that flows through the states of Saxony, Brandenburg and Berlin in the former East Germany. Approximately 400 kilometres (250 mi) in length, it is a left bank tributary of the River Havel, which itself flows into the Elbe and then the North Sea. It is the river on which the original centre of Berlin was built.

The reach of the river between the Dämeritzsee and Müggelsee to the east of Berlin is known as the Müggelspree. more...

Did you know, that...?

... Ostalgie is a German term referring to nostalgia for aspects of the old life in East Germany? more…

New and expanded articles

The following are articles, related to East Germany, added in the last six months.

All articles on East Germany are here;
Articles on East German people are here.
Wanted articles

The following are wanted articles, related to East Germany, that exist on German Wikipedia, or are otherwise wanted.


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