Heinzig D. Forced expulsion from the Humboldt university in 1954. A memoir

Sterkhov D.V., Lyubin V.P.


Translation from German and preparation for publication by D.V. Sterkhov, introductory article by V.P. Lubina Abstract. The memoirs of Dieter Heinzig, a world-famous German sinologist, former deputy. director of the BIOST Institute in Cologne (Germany), with which INION had a partnership agreement in the period between 1977 and 1990. Under this agreement, D. Heinzig and his family were on an internship at INION for a year in 1980–1981. Heinzig is the author of several publications in the «Russia and the Modern World» journal. In this article, he shares his memories of teaching Russian at a post-war high school in the Ore Mountains (Erzgebirge) in Saxony, then studying as a future Chinese specialist at the Humboldt University in East Berlin. Heinzig pays special attention to the uprising in East Berlin on June 17, 1953 and its consequences both for the social and political life in the GDR and for himself personally. 1954 saw the peak of the confrontation between Dieter Heinzig and the party authorities of the GDR, as a result of which the young Sinologist student was forcibly expelled from the Humboldt University and sent to indefinite production work. These events forced Heinzig to flee East Berlin to the West and continue his studies at the West German University of Hamburg. These memoirs are of value to researchers of the confrontation between the Eastern and Western blocs in Europe during the Cold War, as well as to historians studying the history of Germany.


Dieter Heinzig; Humboldt University; East Germany; Cold War; June 17 1953 uprising; memoirs.

DOI: 10.31249/rsm/2022.04.08

Download text