Skip to content

Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

World Wide Wednesday: Berlin Wall tribute

Read more articles by

Each week we will be focusing on blogs from around the world dealing specifically with urban environments. We’ll be on the lookout for websites outside the country that approach themes related to urban experiences and issues.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

This past Monday marked the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall–one of the defining moments of the 20th century, reunifying Berlin and symbolizing for many the collapse of the USSR and the end of the cold war. The 28-mile-long wall, which separated East and West Berlin from 1961 to 1989, ranks among the most significant and well-known pieces of urban infrastructure in the world. In tribute to that momentous and world-changing event 20 years ago and to the wall’s profound cultural impact, this week’s World Wide Wednesday is dedicated to the Berlin Wall and the city it divided.

More than 100, 000 people celebrated the historic anniversary Monday night. The celebrations included speeches from world leaders and a free concert from Berlin’s renowned State Opera orchestra. But the real highlight of the celebration was the toppling of over 1,000 giant styrofoam dominoes decorated by over 15,000 children from around the word. The dominoes covered two kilometers of the wall’s former path.

For a refresher course, the New York Times has published an excellent in-depth feature on the history of the Berlin Wall and it’s legacy.

Mediate is hosting a collection of magazine covers showcasing some of most iconic images of the Berlin Wall. The New York Times and CNN have also posted galleries of archival photographs in honour of the occasion.

The Berlin Blog looks at the changes in the city’s urban landscape since 1989, and how the wall, though mostly vanished, continues to play a role in how the city sees and organizes itself.

And finally, The Guardian has produced five mini documentaries of Berliners talking about the significance and legacy of the wall.

Photo by Andrew Stawarz, on flickr


One comment