Title: < FREIE STADT> zwischen stacheldraht?
Photographer(s): Various photographers
Publisher(s): Bundesministerium fur Gesamtdeusche Fragen, Bonn/Berlin, Germany
Size: 16 x 22 cm
Print: W. Girardet, Essen, Germany
Nation(s) and year(s) of Protest: Germany, 1960
As the title suggest Free city, with the barbed wire? this book talks departing from what remain after the World War II in Berlin, the city divided in “Sektoren” , 2 major sector America and Russian and the American until now divided with the French and England.
The America sector with more possibilities to provide work for the new wave of post war attracted people from Est sector of Berlin.
But little by little the Russian politics in the city was , at the beginning, to create problems to the people that pass the border, that until 1960 was free and just marked by signs that inform that “ you are leaving the American sector”.
The fact that it is written in German means that the book is dedicated to the citizens of Germany.The print run is not indicated, but from my research, this book and others like it were very common so they could be found in schools and libraries.
Such a high uptake indicates that communication through this medium was crucial in forming a mindset as well as a way to reach even Easterners who could talk to their friends about what is happening on the 2 sector border.
In a way I see this kind of book as a way to document and protest a situation but also a propaganda book that can be used by those who publish it, as a way to influence people's thinking.
One must consider that these books were made with a strong sense of communication. From the information I was able to obtain there should be a print run of around 50,000 copies, such numbers testify to the desire to use them as propaganda tools. Teachers would show them in class to talk about what was happening in Berlin and the political situation in Europe.