Regina Scheer "Bitter Fountains" Herta Gordon-Walcher and the dream of revolution.

6/12/24 in Waren (Müritz)

R. Scheer credit Kathrin Burghardt.jpg Zuschnitt, © Penguin Random House Verlagsgruppe

The next dates:

  • Wednesday, Jun 12, 202419:00 o'clock

Reading and discussion

The life story of an extraordinary woman.
- Awarded the Leipzig Book Fair Prize 2023 -

An alternative to capitalism is possible, a world without war, poverty and exploitation: the young Jewish woman Hertha Gordon, later Walcher, is convinced of this when she joins the socialists in the 1910s and plunges into the struggle. She experienced the great dream of revolution at first hand, but also the failure and painful end of the illusions. The story of her life in the century is the panorama of an era.

Regina Scheer tells the captivating story of an extraordinary woman in turbulent times, of existential struggles among like-minded people in Weimar democracy, of resistance against the National Socialists, of a dramatic escape to the USA via Marseille, of exile in New York and of the hope of rebuilding a different Germany after the war.

Regina Scheer knew Hertha Walcher (1894-1990) since her childhood and talked to her for many years. She offers an extraordinary, very private view of an impressive woman who traveled clandestinely to Moscow to deliver documents and met Lenin and Stalin there; who was a specialist in the production of secret ink and whose companions included Rosa Luxemburg, Clara Zetkin, Wilhelm Pieck, Bertolt Brecht and Willy Brandt. Full of empathy, Scheer tells of a life full of privation in the service of a great idea, of indestructible hope, of solidarity and helpfulness, but also of bitter disputes between people who are nevertheless pursuing the same goal.

from the jury's statement for the Lepzig Book Fair Prize 2023:
"With "Bitter Fountains", Regina Scheer traces the extraordinary and exemplary life of Hertha Gordon-Walcher, simultaneously chronicling the socialist and feminist movements of the 20th century. "Bitter Fountains" goes far beyond an ordinary biography: the author masterfully and transparently interweaves historical research with personal memories. She was aided by her masterful memory, which she used to compile a collection piece by piece. This narrative non-fiction book stands for great openness in dealing with breaks, inconsistencies and gaps in our knowledge of life stories - and is a precise documentation of political contexts whose traces shape the present."

"An important book that adds its very own wealth of experience to the great narratives about the 20th century." Deutschlandfunk, Andruck (September 18, 2023)

an event in the LESEZEICHEN! series organized by the bookshop müritz.buch and Haus des Gastes Waren | Tickets available in advance at müritz.buch and at the Waren (Müritz) Information Office as well as online at

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Good to know

Event dates
  • Wednesday, Jun 12, 2024 19:00 o'clock
Event Location

House of the guest Waren (Müritz)

Neuer Markt 21
17192 Waren (Müritz)
03991 747790
Contact the organiser

House of the guest Waren (Müritz)

Neuer Markt 21
17192 Waren (Müritz)
03991 747790


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