Freelance author Vera Lengsfeld was born in Sondershausen, Thüringen. After studying history and philosophy in Leipzig and Berlin and working as an academic in the DDR (at the Academy of Science and the Central Institute of Philosophy), she was a reader at the publishing company Neues Leben. She also studied philosophy of religion at St. John’s College Cambridge in Great Britain.
In the 70s and 80s, Vera was active in the opposition to the SED regime and as a consequence was: put on party trial for deviationism and for working in the civil-rights movement; forcibly excluded from SED; issued with an employment ban, a travel ban, arrest and ultimately deportation.
In the 80s, she co-founded Pankower Friedenskreis (Pankow Peace Circle), which was involved in the fall of the Berlin Wall (at Bornholmer Street). She was a member of the Constitutional Commission of the Round Table Member of the People’s Parliament of the DDR and was a co-organiser of all the important environmental and peace movement events in the DDR. She is also co-founder of the Citizen’s Advice Bureau for the Persecutees of the DDR Dictatorship as well as the Gedenkstättenverein des Strafgefängnisses Hohenschönhausen. Between 1990 and 2005, as an elected member of the Bundestag, she was a member of the German Federal Parliament’s committees on defence, environment, economy and culture.
Vera was awarded the Aachener Peace Award in 1990 and the Bundesverdienstkreuz in 2008.