Sophie Scholl was a woman who fought back against the Nazis during World War II. Her childhood was ordinary. She had two brothers and two sisters. Her father was the mayor of a small town. Eventually, the family moved and the family had only each other to rely on. As a child, she joined the Hitler Youth but would eventually she would turn against Hitler. What were the events that turned her against Hitler? Why did she turn against Hitler? The run time for this documentary is 51:09.
Sophie’s story starts with a trip to the stationer’s shop with a friend. She is looking to purchase paper. She requests one thousand sheets of paper. Her friend is shocked by the request. The shopkeeper assumes that she is purchasing the paper to write her love. He does not have one thousand sheets but brings Sophie one hundred sheets due to rationing. Sophie purchases the paper and shoves them in her bag. Her friend is immediately suspicious about the purchase. Sophie challenges her friend by stating that if the men will not rise up against Hitler, then the woman would.
Then Sophie’s story flashes back to her childhood. She talks about her father the mayor and how they moved. Hitler came into power and Sophie and her siblings were thrilled with Hitler. Their parents were nervous about Hitler. Sophie’s father was a pacificist and her mother was a devoted woman. One by one Sophie’s siblings joined the Hitler Youth. Eventually, Sophie joined the Hitler Youth. Her father was unhappy with his children joining the Hitler Youth. Sophie’s siblings argue with her father over why the Hitler Youth was a good thing. Her father is skeptical.
Sophie moved up the ranks in the Hitler Youth. However, she still loved music, dancing, and boys. She and the young people would meet up at a friend’s house to listen to music and dance. It was here she would meet a new boy. Things changed when the family received a visit from the Gestapo. The Scholl family house was searched and Sophie and three of her siblings were arrested. They were accused of being part of illegal youth organizations. They were kept in a local jail for questioning. Her brother was in jail for weeks for reading illegal books and listening to illegal music. Sophie was shocked that a government would arrest and imprison children.
Then the war started, and Sophie’s father was right about war coming. Sophie kept up a correspondence with her soldier friend. When he had military leave they would get away. They would go and pass for a married couple. Sophie was recruited to another organization where she and the young woman would be taught the correct way to work. It was terrible and Sophie was forced to work in the agricultural sector.
Eventually, Sophie moved to Munich for university, and a new world was opened to her. Then Hitler invaded Russia and there were failures on the front. Then someone handed her a pamphlet from the organization of the White Rose. She read it and started questioning everything. Soon she discovered that her brother Hans was part of the organization. She wanted to join up with the organization but Hans did not want her to. She eventually did join up with the organization and took part in distributing leaflets.
She distributed leaflets throughout major German cities and even went to Austria. It was risky. They tricked the Gestapo into believing that the network was far and wide. However, the organization had only a handful of students. The Gestapo was determined to find out who was behind the White Rose. The White Rose took on more risks and worked to distribute more leaflets. They had a copy machine and worked to write slogans on buildings. The war continued to go badly for Germany and the losses kept mounting on the Eastern Front. What would happen to Sophie and the White Rose organization? Continue to watch this episode to find out more.
This would be an excellent documentary to share during the World War II section in history. If you have a student doing a biography on Sophie Scholl then I would recommend this documentary.
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