Zoo Station: Adventures in East and West Berlin

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9780436560934: Zoo Station: Adventures in East and West Berlin

Alone among cities, Berlin is divided into capitalist and communist zones, the two systems of life and thought which dominate the metropolitan world. It is a two-faced city where every single thing is mirrored and echoed in an undeclared war of buildings, cars, clothes, flags, food, music and street-signs. Ian Walker grew up with the cold war on the television, but now he has friends both sides of the border, both sides of the argument. "Zoo Station" is what happens when a journalist goes AWOL. From his base in the Turkish ghetto of Kreuzberg (a flat he shares with runaways and exiles, and people wanted by the law) he travels on underground and overground trains back and forth across the systems. He hangs out at the British officers' mess formerly used by the Wehrmacht, takes tea in East Berlin with an old English communist. He visits the phony town called Doughboy City where the US Army holds its war games, smuggles books and records across the border for his friends in the Soviet Sector. He watches western peepshows, rides eastern roller-coasters. He chews up the cold war like a dog. He befriends escapists, ex-prisoners, guestworkers, dissidents and pop musicians. He drinks and dances till dawn in the demi-monde of West Berlin. He is in love, but slowly things fall apart. The inhabitants of his Kreuzberg flat scatter to all corners of the earth. "Zoo Station" is an odyssey through the two Berlins, through private and public worlds, a collage of history and journalism, and polemic, facts and jokes, and the songs playing in the background.

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From Publishers Weekly:

This rambling exploration of life on both sides of the cold war's most tangible line of demarcation is an intensely personal account by a former Central American correspondent for the Observer. Walker's friendships with the people he writes about provides an immediacy and an understanding that might otherwise be lacking. Unfortunately, Walker's private and decidedly pro-Communist political leanings are also given free rein, resulting in unabashed attacks on the West and embarrassing apologetics for and homilies on the East. He vividly portrays the seedier side of West Berlinthe only side he deals withwithout elaboration, but a reference to long food lines in East Berlin prompts him to explain that the queues allow a more equitable distribution of scarce resources. When he remarks to a friend that "what the west calls Soviet imperialism is not really comparable to US imperialism," it is clear which he considers the real evil.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

When it comes to drama, tragedy, intrigue, and downright kinkiness, the two Berlins have few urban rivals. The author of this fascinating personal account, a young British journalist with a taste for the marginal, provides the reader with a kaleidoscopic view of the city. Never forgetting that Berlin is an East-West flashpoint where two competing systems are obliged to coexist side by side, Walker shows us the city through the eyes of his numerous contacts, friends, and acquaintanceson both sides of the wall. The result is colorful armchair travel writing at its most entertaining. However, readers in search of more practical information should stick to the standard guides. Ian Wallace, Agriculture Canada Lib., St. Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Ian Walker
Editore: Secker & Warburg (1987)
ISBN 10: 0436560933 ISBN 13: 9780436560934
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Descrizione libro Secker & Warburg, 1987. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 436560933

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Walker, Ian
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Descrizione libro Secker & Warburg, 1987. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110436560933

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Editore: Secker & Warburg (1987)
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