Germany's Transformation since 1989 and the Question of Wendegerechtigkeit: A Conversation with Petra Köpping and Ingo Schulze

Oct 06, 2022  | 5:30 - 8:00pm ET

Public Event at GHI Washington | Speakers: Petra Köpping (Saxony’s Minister for Social Affairs) and Ingo Schulze (Author)

Watch recording

How exactly was Germany transformed after the fall of the Berlin wall and the unification of East and West Germany in 1989/90? How does German society remember and reflect on the transformations of the last thirty years – including the question how this transformation has adressed issues of fairness and justice? Is the process of German unification – not just as a political but also an economic and social process – complete? Has a national consensus about the meaning of democracy and freedom been reached?

The German Historical Institute Washington has invited two prominent German figures to discuss these issues: the writer Ingo Schulze and Petra Köpping, Saxony’s Minister for Social Affairs (Ministerin für Soziales und gesellschaftlichen Zusammenhalt). Both were born in the GDR and have dealt with Germany’s transformation from different perspectives: Ingo Schulze as a prominent public intellectual who regularly intervenes in public debates and as a novelist and writer whose works have repeatedly dealt with German history and present, including unification and its aftermath; Petra Köpping as a politician who has held political positions dealing with social policy, including such topics as intra-German inequalities of pay and pensions, the integration of refugees as well as the pandemic.

The German Historical Institute is honored to welcome Ingo Schulze and Petra Köpping in our Washington office. The conversation, which will take place in German, will be moderated by Simone Lässig, director of the German Historical Institute Washington, and Richard Wetzell, research fellow and editor of the GHI’s Bulletin.

Press contact: Swen Steinberg, Strategic Advisor and Head of Communications (