Spending the 1989-1990 academic year in Eastern Germany, the historian Robert Darnton found himself caught up in the dramatic events in Berlin and Leipzig which eventually forced the re-unification of Germany. This eye-witness account of the French Revolution traces a revolution of a different kind where there were no barricades, no storming of the Bastille and no guillotines. Darnton covers both the overthrow of the old East German regime (September 1989 - January 1990) and the establishment of the new (January - July 1990) travelling widely to uncover the lives of those who had suffered in silence for 40 years. In hours of conversation with his academic colleagues and ordinary citizens, newly elected local officials and member of the staunch Communist Old Guard, and an extraordinary survivor of the Holocaust, Darnton heard the East Germans unburden themselves of their past and express their hopes for the future. Darnton's book shows the human face of revolution, thus refreshing our sense of the possible in history.