WCU sponsors speaker in Sylva on communism, human rights, LGBT issues

Mario Rollig, a gay man imprisoned by the East German government in the 1980s, will be the guest speaker at the Jackson County Public Library in Sylva on Wednesday, April 13.

Mario Rollig

Mario Rollig

The event begins at 4 p.m. in the community room. Rollig will tell of his experiences being captured as a gay teen trying to flee an oppressive society, held as a political prisoner and subsequently tortured, and his views of communism, human rights and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues.

Western Carolina University’s Department of World Languages and Department of English are sponsoring the event along with the Jackson County Public Library and City Lights Bookstore.

Today, Rollig lives in a unified Berlin, where he gives tours and lectures at the Hohenschonhausen Memorial Museum. The museum occupies the infamous detainment camp and prison where he was held and tortured.

For more information, go to www.fontanalib.org/sylva or call 828-586-2016.