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Handmade angels in a traditional Saxon-style as produced by “Gerda Elten Arts and Crafts”

Holidays with religious roots posed a bit of a challenge to the GDR’s socialist masters. Officially, the GDR was a secular state and a significant portion of both Party members and the general public regarded organized religion with great suspicion often bordering on hostility. (For an interesting piece on how these attitudes persist see this recent article in The Guardian which labels the former-East “the most godless place on earth”.)

That said, as is the case in today’s Canada, religious-based holidays (e.g. Christmas and Easter), continued to have great significance on the social calendar. In the GDR, the state naturally downplayed the religious aspects of the holidays, sometimes to rather comical effect. An example of this is illustrated by this week’s featured item, a set of handmade angels crafted by a folk artist from the Saxon city of Leipzig. Read More

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