White Rose photography exhibit at Xavier's Gallagher Student Center commemorates Nazi-era resistance

Cincinnati Mayor declares Tuesday, Sept. 6, as White Rose day in recognition of the exhibit | September 6, 2011

A photography exhibit depicting the participation of seven students from the University of Munich in the Nazi resistance group White Rose, or Die Weisse Rose in German, is on display from Sept. 6 through Oct. 10 in the Gallagher Student Center.

Presented by the Office of Interfaith Community Engagement, Xavier’s German language program, the Weisse Rose Foundation, and Lord Mayor Christian Ude of Munich, the 47 black and white photographs with accompanying text introduce the story of White Rose. The exhibit opens at 5:30 p.m. and includes a reception. All are welcome.

The Munich students formed the White Rose resistance group in 1942 in opposition to the Nazi regime. The group 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 regime. Among the students were two siblings, Sophie and Hans, known in Germany as the Geschwister Scholl, who were executed with their fellow White Rose members on Feb. 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 the Office of Interfaith Community Engagement.

The presidents of area German-American societies are attending the opening, and Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory has proclaimed today as White Rose Day in Cincinnati in honor of the exhibit. Xavier’s Department of Music is presenting an aria from Weiße Rose, a one-act chamber opera by composer Udo Zimmermann, which premiered in 1967. The U.S. premiere was presented by Opera Omaha in 1988.

The Scholl siblings stand for a young generation's resistance against hatred, and today many schools in Germany carry the Scholl name. Young Germans active in today’s opposition against the new Nazi 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 exhibit co-sponsors are the Honorary German Consul, Lord Mayor Christian Ude of Munich, Weisse Rose Foundation, Hofbräuhaus Newport, and Xavier’s 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 programs, History Club, Modern Languages department, Women of Excellence, Office of Interfaith Community Engagement and German department.