Stasi Files Revisited The Banalities and Betrayals of Life in East Germany

A West German dessert. A "flour box." A female driver. The East German secret police took an interest in all manner of banal details as it oppressed its citizenry. Now that Germany is celebrating 20 years since the fall of the Wall, more people than ever are taking a look into their Stasi files.
Von Sarah Karacs
The files occupy over 100 kilometers of shelf space, though this doesn't even include the 16,000 sacks of shredded documents the Birthler Authority is currently trying to reassemble with the aid of computers.

The files occupy over 100 kilometers of shelf space, though this doesn't even include the 16,000 sacks of shredded documents the Birthler Authority is currently trying to reassemble with the aid of computers.

Foto: JOHN MACDOUGALL/ AFP