The ‘People’s Sport’: Petty Theft in the German Democratic Republic, 1963-1985
AbstractThis article examines petty theft in the GDR. It considers offences committed from the early 1960s to 1985. It shows that GDR citizens stole a range of items including money, vehicle parts, clothes, food, cigarettes, alcohol, and construction materials and/or equipment from places such as factories, construction sites, shops, staff rooms, private homes, and colleagues’ bags. Many of these thieves were apparently motivated by a lack of money to buy the things that they desired. Though petty theft did undermine the vision of socialist society that the Party hoped to create, there is little evidence to support the conclusion that it constituted an act of outright resistance. Thieves stole for personal gain rather than in order to thumb their nose at Party bosses.
CitationMillington, R. (2023 - forthcoming). The ‘People’s Sport’: Petty theft in the German Democratic Republic, 1963-1985. East Central Europe, vol(issue), pages. doi
JournalEast Central Europe
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