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Experiencing Displacement: The Transformation of Women's Spaces in (Former) East Germany

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Based on a comparison of two different research projects carried out in (former) East Germany, this paper analyses the effects of German (re)unification and postsocialist transformation as a specific, gendered form of displacement. We show how new divisions between “public” and “private” have affected women's sense of self and identity, cautioning against the notion that geographical restructuring will inevitably result in an empowering dissolution of fixed, placebound identities. Instead, we emphasise that places are connected to identities through relations of power and social practices that create unequal conditions for engagement in the (re)production of space. Feminist approaches to citizenship are discussed as one way of challenging the current marginalisation of East German women in unified Germany.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Geographical Sciences, University of Plymouth, UK;, Email: 2: Faculty of Spatial Sciences, University of Groningen, The Netherlands;, Email:

Publication date: September 1, 2003


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