Freiheit! The White Rose Remembered! A Graphic Novel Review

16 Feb

Released February 16, 2021

Resistance is not futile, and a group of students in Germany do not believe the Reich is right. They formed the White Rose, a group of non-violent intellectuals, to change public opinion about who is best to govern this country. Their goal was to say we don’t have to follow the status quo, and the leaflets they handed out quoted many historical figures, whether they be philosophers or writers, to present how to move forward.

By using the words of the past, these young adults hoped to spur a better future for Germany.

Anyone who’s studied German History knows their fate, and this work by Andrea Grosso Ciponte shows the origin of how this opposition started. I’m blown away by the artwork because the presentation is like watching a piece of old cinema. It truly puts readers into this old world, the problems these kids faced (it was black and white), and the terror which wasn’t of their design!

As historians all know, the Gestapo caught and executed Sophie Scholl, her brother Hans, Christoph Probst, Alexander Schmorell and Willi Graf because they spoke out. I couldn’t find anything in this work that felt fictionalized and to read a work that feels authentic is rare. This graphic novel remembers these young adults as heroes and gives us a reproduction of those letters that were distributed so we can understand what their goals were.

This added touch makes this graphic novel an essential read. Sometimes, listening to an instructor isn’t enough. We need supplemental material in film and graphic novels to add to the lecture. Ciponte’s presentation is one of those to show how the hammer fell when words aren’t enough.

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