Friday, November 21, 2014

Squatting in East & West Berlin


West Berlin has a long tradition of civil, grassroots political action. One of the clearest demonstrations of this tradition is the well established squatter movement in the city. After the Fall: Socio-Spatial Movements in East Berlin plots the location and significant dates of civil action in both East and West Berlin.

Significant instances of civil action are plotted on the map using two colors. The yellow markers show 'socio-spatial movements' from before the fall of the Berlin Wall and the blue markers those which occurred after the fall. The red line on the map shows the position of the Berlin Wall.

The map demonstrates how before the collapse of the Berlin Wall this movement of civil action was largely confined to West Berlin. However since the reunification of Germany the eastern half of the city has also seen a rise in civil action, particularly in the growing squatting movement.


The data for the After the Fall map comes from Berlin Besetzt. Berlin Besetzt is a map showing the locations of squats in Berlin from 1970 to the present day. You can view all the houses that have been squatted in this period or you can use the date slide control to view the history of squatting in Berlin over the last few decades.

Using the date control it appears that 1981 was the golden age for squatters in Berlin. This map also clearly shows the rise of squatting in east Berlin after the fall of the Berlin Wall. The map also reveals that Kreuzberg has remained a very popular area for Berlin squatters for more that thirty years.
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