Jacques Mayer: Die Freilassung Paul Merkers im Januar 1956, in: Jahrbuch für Historische Kommunismusforschung 2024. Berlin: Metropol Verlag, pp. 263–297.

Paul Merker (1894–1969) was the highest-ranking SED functionary to be reprimanded for (allegedly) preparing a political show trial in the GDR that never took place, arrested and finally, long after Stalin's death, sentenced to a long prison term in a secret trial in 1955. The case has been widely published, partly because of its anti-Semitic background.

Merker's release in 1956 is sometimes erroneously described as a consequence of the 20th Congress of the CPSU. The actual course of Merker's pardon by GDR President Pieck is the subject of this work. Merker's expulsion from the party as a result of a denunciation by Anton Ackermann is discussed in detail. Merker defended himself vigorously in court – this is described on the basis of the trial transcript – and finally the refusal of political rehabilitation is discussed.

Über den Autor

Dr. rer. nat. Jacques Mayer, geb. 1951 in Berlin. 1970 bis 1975 Studium der Mathematik in der Sowjetunion (Universität Jerewan); 1976 bis 1979 Promotionsstudium (Aspirantur) an der Moskauer Lomonossow-Universität, dort 1979 Promotion in Mathematik. Danach bis 2017 wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter an den mathematischen Instituten der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin bzw. der Akademie der Wissenschaften der DDR in Berlin. Seit 1997 Forschungen zur Geschichte von KPD und Komintern.

Jahrbuch für Historische Kommunismusforschung