Daughters of Eve: Women's Writing from the German Democratic Republic

Nancy Lukens, Editor, Dorothy Rosenberg, Editor University of Nebraska Press $50 (332p) ISBN 978-0-8032-2892-4
The works of fiction that make up this intriguing collection, with the occasional essay or interview mixed in, date from the mid-'70s to the mid-'80s and reveal the personal side of East German life. Most relate tales of isolated women resigned to their lot: overburdened both at work and at home. Charlotte Worgitzky's exhausted Superwoman--school principal, city council member, wife and mother--explains how she struck a deal with an angel so that she no longer needed sleep as long as she was faithful to her husband; she uses her newfound time to do laundry and hang curtains. Maria Seidemann's museum guide wears an invisible blue hood to protect her from the world--and from intimacy. Similar to many stories, the interviews reveal women often facing unwanted pregnancy and abortion. One of Irene Bohme's subjects coolly recounts her experience: ``I tried everything to get rid of the kid: red wine with pepper and hot baths, wild motorcycle rides, and who knows what kind of pills, until I threw up.'' Lukens and Rosenberg, both professors of German and women's studies at the University of New Hampshire and Mount Holyoke College, respectively, provide a historical introduction, and their translations are first-rate. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/02/1993
Release date: 08/01/1993
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 332 pages - 978-0-8032-7942-1
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