German Propaganda Archive Calvin University


Background: The FDJ, or Free German Youth, was the official youth group of the GDR. Nearly everyone belonged. These pictures come from a book reviewing the FDJ’s activities between 1976 and 1980.

The source: Vom X. zum XI. Parlament der Freien Deutschen Jugend. Übersicht zur Arbeit der Freien Deutschen Jugend in den Jahren 1976 bis 1980 sowie zu den Arbeits- und Lebensbedingungen der Jugend in der DDR (Berlin: Verlag Junge Welt, 1981).

The Free German Youth

This is a scene from the 10th congress of the FDJ in 1976. Egon Krenz, the FDJ head, is standing next to Erich Honecker.
A mass night gathering in Berlin. The slogan in the background reads: “The GDR: Our Socialist Fatherland.”
This shows a gathering of youth from the Soviet Union and the GDR.
This is a torchlight parade down Unter den Linden in Berlin.
One of the goals of the FDJ was to build solidarity with the developing world. Here we have members of the FDJ meeting with Third World counterparts.
The slogan here says: “Free German Youth: The fighting reserve of the SED.” The point was that the FDJ was the source of new members for the SED.

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