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German Author to Talk on Memoir Detailing Family Memories of East Germany

(Posted April 19, 2010)

Susan Schädlich, author of "December, Time and Again: The West, the Secret Police and My Uncle"

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- The Berlin Wall separating Germany into East and West Germany fell more than 20 years ago, but the repercussions of dividing a country in two still affect many of Germany's citizens according to a new book by German author Susanne Schädlich, who will give a lecture and reading at 5 p.m., Thursday, April 29, in Founders Hall 420 on the Juniata campus.

The lecture and reading is free and open to the public. The lecture is sponsored by Juniata's German Program, the Department of World Languages & Cultures and the Provost's Office.

Schädlich will read from "December, Time and Again: The West, the Secret Police and My Uncle," a new book detailing her childhood in East Germany and her difficulty in adapting to her family's new home in the West.

Schädlich's literary talent is a family trait. Her father, Hans Joachim Schädlich, is an acclaimed author in his own right who was forced to leave East Germany in 1977 and relocate to West Germany after publishing a book of essays that the East German government deemed critical of the government.

After moving to the West, Susanne Schädlich moved to California in 1987 to study at the University of Southern California, where she earned a bachelor's degree. Although her family had left East Germany, her father continued to experience harassment. Then in 2003, it was revealed that Susanne's uncle had spied on his brother and his family for the Stasi, East Germany's secret police. Her uncle committed suicide in 2007 and Susanne published her memoir of the experience several years later.

Currently, she is writer-in-residence at Dickinson College at the Max Kade Center for the Study of Contemporary German Culture.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.