Günter Karau

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Karau’s obituary in the ND of 6 May 1986 posted by his publisher

Günter Karau (* 20 April 1929 in Berlin; † 26 April 1986 ibid) was a German writer who became known, especially in the GDR, for a series of books with themes from recent history.


Günter Karau was born in Berlin to a working-class family and graduated from high school in 1947.

Until 1952, he worked as an investigator in a West Berlin private detective agency and as a police officer, among other jobs. In 1952 he moved to East Berlin, where he first worked as a local editor and reporter at the BZ am Abend. In 1964 he moved to Neue Berliner Illustrierte, where he was deputy editor-in-chief. He wrote political-publicistic articles, short stories, children’s books and novels.[1]

Among other things, Karau wrote an agent thriller in which the board game Go plays an essential role: Go or Double Game in the Underground. The book was based on the same story as the film Chiffriert an Chef – Ausfall Nr. 5, in whose screenplay he was involved together with his wife Gisela Karau and Helmut Dziuba.
Together with Gisela Karau he also wrote the screenplay for the film Der lange Ritt zur Schule (The Long Ride to School ), based on the children’s book of the same name by Gerhard Holtz-Baumert.

Works (selection)

  • Democracy in the GDR. Von Machtverhältnissen und gesellschaftlichen Lebensformen im sozialistischen deutschen Staat. State Secretariat for West German Affairs, Berlin 1968
  • Schoolboy Love. Novel. Verlag Neues Leben, Berlin 1972
  • The jumper with the long ears. Narrative. In: Reimar Dänhardt (ed.): Die feine Dame, der starke Bauer und der Springer mit den langen Ohren. Children’s book. Kinderbuchverlag Berlin, Berlin 1975
  • Grândola. Reportages from Portugal. Mitteldeutscher Verlag, Halle (Saale) 1976
  • Go, or double-crossing underground. Novel. Militärverlag der DDR, Berlin 1983, ISBN 3-327-00589-3
  • The testimony / Günter Guillaume. Recorded by Günter Karau. Experience report/biography. Military Publishing House of the GDR, Berlin 1988, ISBN 3-327-00670-9

Individual references

  1. Gabriele Baumgartner, Dieter Hebig (eds.): Biographisches Handbuch der SBZ/DDR. 1945-1990. vol. 1: Abendroth – Lyr. K. G. Saur, Munich 1996, ISBN 3-598-11176-2, pp. 375-376