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Little People Made Big

Neal Ascherson: In Love with the Cause

9 January 2014
Red Love: The Story of an East German Family 
by Maxim Leo, translated by Shaun Whiteside.
Pushkin, 264 pp., £16.99, September 2013, 978 1 908968 51 7
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The Jew Car 
by Franz Fühmann, translated by Isabel Fargo Cole.
Seagull, 257 pp., £13.50, June 2013, 978 0 85742 086 2
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... Werner Schwieger, one of Maxim Leo’s grandfathers, hung out a big swastika banner after Hitler came to power. But he couldn’t get his father-in-law, Fritz, to accept one: Fritz was a left-winger. Twenty years later, in the German Democratic Republic, Werner hung out a big red flag, but he didn’t even offer one to Fritz. He thought Fritz wasn’t left-wing enough. Werner, from a working-class ...

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