The remains of the wall – Walking in Berlin

I’ve said this again and again, but I never cease to be amazed at the proximity of history in Berlin, the fascinating way that the past century has imprinted its mark on the city, the constant reminders you discover in the streets, of lives lost, liberties taken, the remains of what was destroyed and this – very German – almost obsession for building it back again the way it was. Mostly, I’m fascinated by the thought than little more than 25 years ago the city was divided in two, and the way that recent past is still now visible, in the architecture of each neighbourhood, in the way people talk, or present themselves, still, as East other West Berliners, in the constant discussion about what should be built or not, and the most fundamental question of how do you deal with the past, how do you move on without forgetting.

So I’ve sampled a few pictures I gathered walking along the Wall – where it still exists, and where it doesn’t, where it is being remembered and where nothing might alert you of its existence any more. I hope this allows you a small walk into recent history and present day Berlin without having to move from your couch, even if it will never be equal to wandering around the streets of Berlin.

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Memorial for the first person who was shot and die trying to cross the wall, in 1962. Peter, 18 years old. The text reads:…he wanted only freedom

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Bits of wall (that wouldn’t have been tagged on that side, being in the deathstrip) and new buildings, Potsdammer Platz

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along the wall (that isn’t there anymore), Prenzlauerberg

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East side gallery

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Repainted wall and new luxury condos, Friedrichshain

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Oberbaumbrücke, no trace of the wall left

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Todestreife turned into a park

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Ackerstrasse, at the museum/memorial of the wall.

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Flight, a person: remembrance culture and individual stories on the pavement

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the death strip kept as it was in Bornholmerstrasse, view over East Berlin

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Watchtower, Berlin Mitte

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wall defined by its absence, view of the ex-deathstrip and Mauerpark

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