Christa Wolf was one of Germany's most celebrated post-war writers. She grew up during Nazi rule and spent most of her adulthood in communist East Germany, where she increasingly came to question ideologies through her writing. In 1989, she was an instrumental figure in the protests leading to the fall of the Berlin Wall. Her work was always innovative and challenging in terms of style and politics, including the ground-breaking Cassandra, Patterns of Childhood and The Quest for Christa T. Her last novel, City of Angels, dealt with her stay in Los Angeles during the fallout from revelations that she had been an informal collaborator with the Stasi in younger years, and naturally been spied upon for a significantly longer period. She has been awarded many prizes, among them the Buchner Prize of the German Academy of Language and Poetry (1980), the Austrian State Prize for European Literature (1985) and the Geschwister-Scholl-Prize of the city of Munich (1987). Christa Wolf died in Berlin in 2011.
Translated by Katy Derbyshire
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