Christa Wolf

Christa Wolf (1921–2011) was one of the most celebrated German writers of the postwar era. A central figure in East German literature and politics, she was arguably the foremost German-German writer, awarded major literature prizes in East, West, and reunified Germany. Her wide-ranging work — nonfiction, fiction, and hybrids of the two — is marked throughout by rigorous self-examination, political engagement, and committed feminism. Her most important reexaminations of the cultural past and personal memory include Cassandra, a crucial text for Western feminists and a secret social critique for her readers in the East; Patterns of Childhood, a groundbreaking reflection on growing up in Nazi Germany; and the autobiographical novel The Quest for Christa T., perhaps Wolf’s most acclaimed work.