Arbeitskreis Texte Matthias Vernaldi at Schloss Wiepersdorf

Project on the GDR civil rights activist and disabled activist Matthias Vernaldi

Arbeitskreis Texte Matthias Vernaldi © private

Former associates of Matthias Vernaldi were guests in Wiepersdorf from 20-22 October on a group scholarship. Their current project is to review and edit the texts of the writer, GDR civil rights activist and disability activist Matthias Vernaldi with the aim of publishing them in an anthology.

Matthias Vernaldi, who died on 9 March 2020, wrote political reflections, prose texts and poetry throughout his life.

In Hartroda, he built a commune in a former vicarage under the roof, but also in constant conflict with the official church. Disabled people and dropouts who escaped persecution under the so-called "asocial paragraph" of § 249 of the GDR penal code lived there together. In addition to concerts, the commune also held theatre performances - the result was constant surveillance by the state security.

After the unification of the two German states, Matthias Vernaldi was one of the pioneers of personal assistance. For many years, he was the chairman of one of the first assistance associations in Berlin. Vernaldi was co-founder of the magazine Mondkalb - Zeitung für das organisierte Gebrechen, for which he also wrote texts. However, many of his articles, essays and speeches remained unpublished. The group's concern is to compile an edition of his texts.


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