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Sophie Scholl

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Sophie Scholl.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    Frank McDonough(Author)

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On 22 February 1943, Sophie Scholl, a 21-year-old student at Munich University, was executed by the Nazi regime, along with two fellow students from the White Rose resistance movement. They had fought against Hitler's tyranny, not with bullets and bombs, but with words, printed in leaflets, that proclaimed a passionate desire to live in a free and democratic society. Her brave and principled stand made her a legend in Germany, and she was voted 'Woman of the Century' by a popular women's magazine in 1999. Frank McDonough has used a variety of original documents from German archives, including letters and diaries, Gestapo interrogation files, court documents and exclusive interviews, most notably with Sophie's sister, to produce this shocking but ultimately inspirational biography of a German heroine who defied Hitler and was executed for her beliefs. It is a story that will stand for all time. It is one of "The London Evening Standard's" Best Books of the Year, 2009. 'Undoubtedly the standard work on its subject' - Richard J. Evans. 'Remarkable historical detective work - a superb, well-researched and well-written biography' - Andrew Roberts. 'Offers insight of real depth into what motivated a shy and polite middle-class girl to resist the Third Reich' - "Catholic Herald".

remarkable historical detective work - a superb, well-researched and well-written biography.....offers insight of real depth into what motivated a shy and polite middle-class girl to resist the Third Reich --Catholic HeraldIn his quest for the true story of Scholl s life and activism, McDonough has examined an unprecedented range of sources, trawled archives, read letters, diaries. Gestapo interrogation files and trial documents, and had access to interviews with surviving participants. The result is a straightforward account, meticulously researched, full of fine detail, and set in the context of the time. --Association Jewish Refugees Journal, August 2010

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Book details

  • PDF | 224 pages
  • Frank McDonough(Author)
  • The History Press Ltd (1 Mar. 2010)
  • English
  • 5
  • Society, Politics & Philosophy

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Review Text

  • By Good book on 1 October 2010

    In 1957 I bought, read, and was very much affected by 'Conscience in Revolt' a book by Annedore Leben (translated from the original German) It briefly related sixty-four stories of resistance in Germany 1933-1945. Included was the story of Sophie Scholl. Some years later I asked a German girl I met if she'd heard of Sophie Scholl. 'Of course!' she said, as much as to say 'Who hasn't?'As soon as I discovered that as recently as 2009 a book about Scholl had been published in England, I ordered it straight away. What a disappoinment! Frank McDonough is an expert on Nazi Germany and has written several books on the subject. This is another one about Nazi Germany, one in which Sophie Scholl plays an incidental part. He tells us about the Hitler Youth, forced euthenasia, anti-semitism, persecution of homosexuals, communists, catholics, opponents of nazism, etc, but does not tell us very much about the subject of the book. What he has to tell us about Sophie Scholl is so little that he has to pad the book out with other matters. In addition there is a bibliography of 145 books and various appendices, including a glossary of German terms in which we learn that the German air force is called the 'Luftwaffe' and the army the 'Wehrmacht'. All this helps to take the number of pages past the 200 mark, presumably to help justify the price.I am too disappointed in the book to comment further other than to deplore the lack of editing, resulting in a plethora of errors. Here are just a few:'opposed' for 'opposed to'; 'Germany' youth for 'Germany's' or 'German' youth;a German 'of' a Frenchman for a German 'or' a Frenchman; 'not' use clinging for 'no' use clinging; not 'far' the main university for not 'far from' the main university; his family soon 'moved' the Rhineland town for 'moved to' the Rhineland town; It 'be comes' for it 'becomes'; British 'Eight' Army for British 'Eighth' Army; 'sterlised' for 'sterilised'; 'twighlight for 'twilight'; and so on. Sometimes he writes 'judgement' and sometimes 'judgment' used in the same context. There is a massive omission of hyphens,: father in law, warm hearted, middle class etc. For the graffiti they use a stencil, which later on is referred to as a template. the duplicating machine used for the leaflets is on one occasion referred to as the 'duplication' machine, and the expression 'put the damper on' appears as 'put the 'dampener' on.I think these few examples give a pretty clear idea of the standard of the text. How can the publishers charge so much for so bad a book?

  • By Bookworm on 1 March 2009

    I am an avid reader of historical and political biography and I have read extensively on the Nazi period. I am not a professional historian but consider myself a bit of a "specialist", albeit an amateur. This is simply one of the best biographies I have ever read. It is erudite and learned but yet is very accessible to the general reader. Sophie's story of courageous and principled resistance to the Nazi regime it told with an immense sympathy and understanding of the subject. Sophie as a person, and a wonderful person, comes through and the reader feels as though he knows her by the end. The author has obviously thoroughly immersed himself in Sophie's moving and inspirational story and he relates her life with a background of original detail based on extensive research. This is a considerable achievement given that Sophie was only 21 when she was executed. This is an amazingly good read and reads like a very good novel which one cannot usually say about historical biographies. The story is told with great sympathy and inspires and moves the reader emotionally. Professor Richard Evans is surely right in saying that this biography is now the definitive work on the subject.

  • By Literary Lady on 4 July 2010

    Thoroughly enjoyed reading this well researched and emotionally charged book. The author's decision to take a more emotionally driven perspective on the story than would be expected from an academic writer works well to draw a none-academic reader such as myself into the story. What earlier reviewers have described as sentimentality did appeal to me, and made it easier for me to access and understand Sophie's story. The extend of historical research completed to give this perspective in on Sophie's life in the English language is significant - as the size of the appendix suggests - but this does not lead to a heavy text, instead insights into the lives of both Scholls making the story come alive. I would recommend this book to those with an interest in learning more about the Nazi resistance coupled with a desire to understand better the emotions as well as the reasoning behind resistance.

  • By Moviebrat on 23 November 2010

    I was drawn to this brilliant book because I had become fascinated by those people who had been brave enough to challenge the Nazis from an intellectual standpoint when they were still vulnerable to criticism from quarters within German society that seemed potentially threatening. Particularly those that had bought into their evil ideologies young, and then realised that they had been duped. Disaffected Hilter Youth who were clearly very dangerous for the Nazi regime.Sophie Scholl was one such woman and her story is powerful and moving in its own right. This book delivers on all counts: it is so well written, and researched and it provides several other insightful historical perspectives; I I felt that I had a stronger grasp on the issues at stake for young Germans when Nazism was at its most horribly persuasive. Their impossible options. The narrow political choices. The appalling hypocrisy, the lack of moral judgement, the ignorant arrogance and the murderous cynicism of several generations of Germans. The exceptions in their midst, women like Sophie, were dispatched summarily. Read this book, and you might get an idea of what being a heroine is really like. And you will certainly get a sense of the atmosphere that The Third Reich exemplified for the tiny minority of people who dared to be rightfully appalled and ashamed. Compulsive.


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