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“5 days in June” | TUCcurrent

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“5 days in June” |  TUCcurrent

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An annotated reading on June 13, 2023 in the Stefan Heym Forum in the TIETZ examines Heym’s novel about the workers’ uprising of June 17, 1953 in the GDR

  • The writer Stefan Heym was made an honorary citizen of the city of Chemnitz in 2001. Photo: International Stefan Heym Society/Andreas Truxa

On June 13, 2023, from 7 p.m., interested parties are invited to a commented reading of Stefan Heym’s novel “5 Days in June”, which is banned in the GDR, about the uprising of June 17, 1953 in the Stefan Heym Forum in the TIETZ. Admission is free. The literary evening is organized by Prof. Dr. Bernadette Malinowski, owner of the Professor of Modern German and Comparative Literature at Chemnitz University of Technology, her colleague Dr. Christoph Grube and Michael Müller, board member of the International Stefan Heym Society.

Background: 70 years ago, on June 17, 1953, tens of thousands of workers in the GDR rose up against the self-proclaimed workers’ and farmers’ state. Having just returned from anti-fascist exile in the USA, Stefan Heym witnessed the events in Berlin up close. And he wrote a novel about it, which was not allowed to be published in his own country and therefore offered material for all sorts of legends: “The Day X”. In the mid-1970s, the novel was finally published in West Germany in a heavily revised version under the title “5 Days in June”, and it was to become one of Heym’s best-known books. With the addition of authentic documents, it recounts the events of June 17, 1953 from the perspective of those who supported and shared responsibility for the events. The renaming of his native city of Chemnitz as Karl-Marx-Stadt a few weeks before the uprising also found its way into the plot.

The reading of the International Stefan Heym Society e. V. is organized in cooperation with the city of Chemnitz.

Mario Steinebach

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