Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain


The Wall: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain
by Peter Sis

From his journals:


April 1956

My father's cousin Lamin is in prison as an enemy of the state. My grandmother talks to my parents about it in German so my sister and I won't understand. But we understand some of it. He was on a national volleyball team that was going to a tournament in the West, and the players were all planning to stay there. The secret police found out. Lamin is twenty years old and will be in prison for the rest of his life.
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November 3, 1957

The Soviet Union launched a rocket carrying a little dog named Laika into space. I wonder how the dog is going to land?
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March 1959

There is a story in our schoolbook about a Russian man who is a class enemy. he hides his wheat harvest in his cellar instead of giving it to the village cooperative. His son, who is a Young Pioneer, finds out and reports it. The family kills the boy. His name is Pavka Morozov. He is a hero. We are told that if we see our parents doing wrong, we should report them.
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May 1966

A group of guys with long hair meet in front of the National Museum and get chased by the police. When they are caught, the police pull out scissors and give them haircuts.
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January-February 1969

Jan Palach and Jan Zajic, students, set themselves on fire to "wake up the nation from lethargy."
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SOMETIMES DREAMS COME TRUE.
ON NOVEMBER 9, 1989, THE WALL FELL.

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