Sophia Scholl was born on 9 may 1921 and died on 22 February 1943. She was executed by guillotine because of her involvement in the White Rose movement.
Her activities included distributing anti-war leaflets with her brother Hans at the University of Munich.Sophie was brought up as a Lutheran and enjoyed a happy, carefree childhood. When she was twelve, she joined the Jungmädel, the junior version of the Bund Deutscher Mädel. Their parents were not so enthusiastic. Their father, Robert Scholl, told his children that Hitler and the Nazis were leading Germany down a road of destruction. Later, in 1942, he would serve time in a Nazi prison for telling his secretary: “The war! It is already lost. This Hitler is God's scourge on mankind, and if the war doesn't end soon the Russians will be sitting in Berlin.” Gradually, Hans and Sophie began realizing that their father was right. They concluded that, in the name of freedom and the greater good of the German nation, Hitler and the Nazis were enslaving and destroying the German people.
Sophie had a talent for and loved painting and drawing. She also had a very firm Christian belief, which led her to believe in every human being’s basic dignity. This in turn led her to resist the Nazi ideology.
She loved children, so worked as Kindergarten teacher. She hoped that this might count for her Reichsarbeitsdienst. She had to do this before she could go to university and unfortunately her work as a Kindergarten teacher was not recognised. In Spring 1941 therefore she had to do similar work in Blumberg. She found the military-like regime distasteful and she began to think about passive resistance.
After her RAD was complete she enrolled at the University of Munich to study biology and philosophy. She made friends there with a group of people who joined in student life to the full but who eventually became politically active. They wanted to end the Nazi time and World War II.
The group designed, printed and distributed leaflets encouraging people to end the war and resist the Nazi regime. On 22 February Sophie, her brother Hans and their friend Christoph Probst were beheaded.
Her last words were:
How can we expect righteousness to prevail when there is hardly anyone willing to give himself up individually to a righteous cause. Such a fine, sunny day, and I have to go, but what does my death matter, if through us thousands of people are awakened and stirred to action?
A film has been made of her story: SophieScholl – The Final Days, 2005, screen play by Fred Breinersdorfer and directed by Marc Rothermund.
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