Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Faust's Gold

Faust's Gold

Inside The East German Doping Machine

Steven Ungerleider, Ph.D.

Thomas Dunne Books



For nearly twenty-five years, East Germany's corrupt sports organization dominated international athletics. While the German Democratic Republic's secret "State Plan" was in effect, more than ten thousand unsuspecting young athletes-- some as young as twelve years old-- were given massive doses of performance-enhancing anabolic steroids. These athletes achieved miraculous success in international competitions, including the Olympics, but for many of them, their physical and emotional health was permanently damaged.

Faust's Gold draws on the revelations of the ongoing trials of former GDR coaches, doctors, and sports officials who have now confessed to conducting ruthless medical experiments on young and talented athletes selected for Olympic training camps. It also draws on the extensive research of Brigitte Berendonk, who escaped from East Germany to begin a decade-long crusade to bring justice to her fellow athletes, and that of her husband, Professor Werner Franke. Berendonk's story, and those of her colleagues in the GDR, offers a unique insight into a bizarre regime.

Faust's Gold is a true-life detective story that plunges into the dark, secretive world of the GDR doping scam, where elite competitors and their families are up against a formidable opponent: the East German secret police, known as the STASI. What emerges is a complex tapestry of the politicized modern Olympics that culminates in a powerful testimony to the massive wrong done by one Eastern Bloc nation to its world-class athletes.


Praise for Faust's Gold

“You may grow faint reading of the systematic blight that was visited upon East Germany's children and their children's children, the birth defects, the staining of a nation's honor for the sake of neurotic sports supremacy. But I urge you to endure, to take it all in. For only then will you cry out with the requisite fury: Never again. Never again.” —Kenny Moore, Sports Illustrated

“Finally, a historical, true account of how a small country of 17 million people, scientists, doctors, and trainers crafted a successful Olympic team using illegal performance-enhancing drugs.” —Dr. Robert Voy, former Chief Medical Officer of the United States Olympic Committee

“Parents with teenage athletes will be particularly interested in learning how desperate coaches, conspiring with unscrupulous physicians, can cast aside all principles and willingly inflict harm on youngsters if it results in winning. There is a lot for all of us to learn from this carefully researched and thorough book.” —Dr. Richard F. Spark, Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Steven Ungerleider, Ph.D.

Steven Ungerleider, Ph.D., the author of four books, completed his undergraduate studies in psychology at the University of Texas, Austin, where he also competed as a collegiate gymnast. He holds master's and doctorate degrees from the University of Oregon and is a licensed psychologist consulting with college, Olympic, and professional athletes. Since 1984, he has served on the United States Olympic Committee Sport Psychology Registry and has covered the past seven Olympiads for various media, including AOL and the Atlanta Constitution. Mental Training for Peak Performance, his third book, is now in its third printing and was named as a Book of the Month Club Selection for Men's Health magazine. Ungerleider lives with his family in Eugene, Oregon.

Steven Ungerleider Ph.D.

From the Publisher

Thomas Dunne Books

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