Primary Source

Excerpt from Freye Klier's Diary

Annotation

Freya Klier was a leading theatrical director in East Germany. She and her husband, Stephan Krawczyk, were outspoken critics of the East German regime and were among the leading organizers of the counter-demonstration during the annual Liebknecht-Luxemburg parade in January 1988. This is an excerpt from Klier's diary in which she records the events of that day.

To view the associated Teaching Case Study, click here.

Freye Klier, "Excerpt from Freye Klier's Diary," 16 January 1988, Making the History of 1989.

Text

Excerpt from Freye Klier's Diary

January 16 [1988]

8pm: Stephanus Foundation. Meeting with the group "Solidarity Church."

Just like over the past few days, the Stasi kept close to me and followed me right up to the edge of the
church property

We prepared for the meeting in May, and reached an agreement about the Luxemburg­Demo for
tomorrow morning. The “Solidarity Church” won’t participate, since it is mainly an initiative of the
emigration self­help group. The initiative overlaps with Stephan’s [Krawczyk] and my plan from this fall
to protest the ban preventing us from working. With our participation we want to draw attention to our
interpretation of Rosa’s legacy – the banner has been ready, a quotation from her.... The walk out to the
memorial in Friedrichsfelde has special symbolic importance for him [Stephan]. He is not just a follower
of Luxemburg’s ideas; just one Luxemburg read out loud during a concert was the reason for him having
to suffer under a work ban.

I arrived home (under convoy with my solidarity brothers and sisters as well as the state security) and met
right away with Stephan at the "Oberkahn." Under the current circumstances I don't want to participate.
Stephan is hurt. The walk out to the Cemetery in Friedrichsfelde has a strong symbolic meaning for him.
He is not just a follower of Luxemburg's ideas­­the reading of a Luxemburg quotation was the grounds for
his work ban.

Stephan doesn't see that his cause is hurt at all by that of the emigration group. They asked him to search
out quotations from Rosa for their banners this week.

He decided to go alone. A friend wants to accompany him. He too doesn't have the intent to leave the
country. They want to position themselves far away from the others in the parade that files past the
government members. There he plans to pull out his banner from under his coat and hold it high for at
least 30 seconds.

It will no longer be Luxemburg's words. In order to distance himself a bit more from the emigration
group, he painted the words "Against the Work Ban" in red paint on a new blank bed sheet

Source: Freya Klier, diary entry, 16 January 1988, trans. Jon Berndt Olsen, Abreiskalender: Ein deutschdeutsches Tagebuch (Munich: Knaur, 1989).

Credits

Freya Klier, diary entry, 16 January 1988, trans. Jon Berndt Olsen, Abreiskalender: Ein deutsch-deutsches Tagebuch (Munich: Knaur, 1989).

How to Cite This Source
Excerpt from Freye Klier's Diary in World History Commons,