Photographer(s): Michael Kerstgens

Writer(s): Stefan Berger, Christoph Fasel, Theo Steegmann

Designer(s): Michael Kerstgens, Oberhausen

Publisher(s): Peperoni Books, Berlin, Germany

Year: 2016

Print run:

Language(s): Deutsch, Englisch

Pages: 160

Size: 21 cm x 28 cm

Binding: Hardcover


Print: Wanderer Druckerei, Ronnenberg, Germany

Nation(s) and year(s) of Protest: Germany, 1987

ISBN: 978-3-941249-02-8

On 26 November 1987 it became known that Krupp-Stahl AG was planning to close the Rheinhausen steelworks. A long labour struggle began with numerous, sometimes spectacular, actions to preserve the steel and ironworks, which had been founded in 1897.

Kerstgens, who had photographed the English miners' strike and the merciless crushing of the British trade unions a few years earlier, was also a close observer of the strike here with a lot of empathy for those affected. His pictures show the strong cohesion of different actors and the solidarity of different social groups. They bear witness to the fact that what was at stake here was not only jobs, but also a humane way of coping with the impending structural change and the future of an entire region. The concern, the tension, the seriousness of the situation, we see all this in the faces of the activists of that time.

Unlike a few years earlier in England, the struggle was not in vain. A painful but acceptable compromise was reached, and the complete loss of hope and future was prevented for most of those affected.

Stefan Berger, Christoph Fasel and Theo Steegmann deal with the history of the workers' movement and the development of the steel industry in the Ruhr area in their accompanying texts.

by Peperoni books

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