Xavier University Presents White Rose Exhibit

University student opposition to Nazi regime | August 30, 2011

From September 6 through October 10, Xavier University will present Die Weiße Rose (White Rose) exhibit on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Gallagher Student Center. Presented by Xavier’s Office of Interfaith Community Engagement, Xavier’s German Language Program, Weisse Rose Foundation, and Lord Mayor Christian Ude of Munich, 47 black and white photographs with accompanying text introduce the story of Die Weiße Rose. The exhibit opening at 5:30pm on September 6 will be followed by a reception.

Weiße Rose, or White Rose, was a resistance group formed in 1942 by seven students from the University of Munich in opposition to the Nazi regime. Weiße Rose denounced the Nazi dictatorship by distributing flyers, specifically on the University campus, decrying the killings of Jewish citizens and dissidents and the war initiated by the Nazi terror regime. Among the students were two siblings known in Germany as the Geschwister (siblings) Scholl, Sophie and Hans, who with their fellow Weiße Rose members were executed for these actions on February 22, 1943.

"Seventy years after university students in Munich launched a non-violent resistance group, an important exhibit comes to our university to inspire our academic community to refine its values and to live a full life of meaningfulness," says Rabbi Abie Ingber, Founding Director of Xavier’s Office of Interfaith Community Engagement.

The presidents of various German-American societies in the area will be present for the opening. Xavier’s Department of Music will present an aria from Weiße Rose, a one-act chamber opera by composer Udo Zimmermann, which premiered in 1967. A revised version premiered at the Hamburg State Opera in 1986 and became an international success. It has been performed at many of the world's leading opera houses, including the Vienna State Opera, Komische Oper Berlin, Zurich Opera, Salzburg Festival and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. The U.S. premiere was presented by Opera Omaha in 1988.

The Geschwister Scholl stand for a young generation's resistance against hatred. Today many schools in Germany carry the Scholl name and young Germans active in the today’s fight against the new Nazis violence carry the spirit of Hans and Sophie Scholl in groups named "White Rose". The main square outside the University of Munich now is called Geschwister Scholl Platz.

White Rose co-sponsors are the Honorary German Consul, Office of Multicultural Affairs, Women’s Center, Xavier Newswire, Art department, Philosophy, Politics and the Public Honors Program, Student Government Association, Theology department, Music department, Brueggeman Center, Peace and Justice, History Club, Hofbräuhaus Newport, Modern Languages department, Women of Excellence, Office of Interfaith Community Engagement, Weisse Rose Foundation, German department, and Lord Mayor Christian Ude of Munich.