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We Will Not Be Silent
Cover of We Will Not Be Silent
We Will Not Be Silent
The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler
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The dramatic, disturbing story of the small group of university students who dared to distribute leaflets condemning Hitler and his policies. Several paid with their lives. It's also an inspiring story of the profound effect young people can create on a nation's history by taking action based on their fervent beliefs.

The dramatic, disturbing story of the small group of university students who dared to distribute leaflets condemning Hitler and his policies. Several paid with their lives. It's also an inspiring story of the profound effect young people can create on a nation's history by taking action based on their fervent beliefs.

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  • Available:
    1
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    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    7.7
  • Lexile:
  • Interest Level:
    MG
  • Text Difficulty:
    6

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Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from February 8, 2016
    Freedman (Angel Island: Gateway to Gold Mountain) illuminates a small but powerful student movement that used a secretive leaflet campaign to oppose Hitler’s regime. Siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl and a few of their like-minded friends at the University of Munich began the White Rose resistance: “All of them were repelled by what was happening in Germany. They yearned to speak freely, to be entirely themselves again.” Nine chapters with titles such as “Rumblings of Doubt” and “ ‘We Are Your Bad Conscience’ ” (wording aimed at Hitler from the fourth leaflet) depict how the Scholls started out as Hitler Youth and gradually became disenchanted with the Nazis’ monolithic message of conformity and hate. Thoroughly researched, with numerous archival photos, this well-told story of the White Rose opposition unfolds chronologically and with building suspense. From the Scholls’ childhood in Nazi Germany to their eventual executions and the legacy of their daring acts of nonviolence, Freedman seamlessly places their story within the larger context of WWII. Source notes, a bibliography, and an index complete this inspiring historical narrative. Ages 10–12.

  • Kirkus

    In the heart of Germany, a student resistance movement called the White Rose took a courageous stand to denounce the Nazis. "They could have chosen to throw bombs," but the young members of the White Rose chose to oppose Nazi Germany with printed words. The clandestine student activists, including Hans and Sophie Scholl and Christoph Probst, wrote leaflets decrying Nazi atrocities, urging German citizens to resist the Nazi government, and denouncing the Nazi "dictatorship of evil." Cranking out thousands of mimeographed leaflets at night in a secret cellar, the students proclaimed to Nazi leaders, "We are your bad conscience," imperiling their lives. Among the wealth of good Holocaust literature available, Freedman's volume stands out for its focus and concision, effectively placing the White Rose in its historical context, telling the story of Nazi Germany without losing the focus on the White Rose, and doing so in just over 100 pages. Archival photographs are effectively integrated into the text, and the typeface at times resembles the typewriter's text on mimeographed leaflets, a nice design choice. The selected bibliography includes volumes for young readers and the superb German-language film Sophie Scholl: The Final Days (2005). A thorough and accessible introduction to the Holocaust and the students who dared to take a stand against evil. (source notes, picture credits, index) (Nonfiction. 10-14) COPYRIGHT(1) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from March 1, 2016

    Gr 6-8-Though the story of the White Rose student resistance in Nazi Germany has been told elsewhere, Freedman's focus on the youth of the participants will resonate with readers. Hans Scholl, a free-spirited teen who became disillusioned by the enforced conformity of his Hitler Youth group, joined a banned rival group that discussed forbidden books, and there were no uniforms or marching. Younger sister Sophie got in trouble for reading a book by a Jewish German poet and questioning the pervasive anti-Semitism of her society. While attending school in Munich, the siblings became active in a group of anti-Hitler pamphleteers. The story has its share of dark turns, including arrests, lengthy detentions, and the eventual trial and execution by guillotine of Hans and Sophie. But Freedman treats these aspects gracefully, and the overarching message is one of defiant resistance in the face of overwhelming evil. "You will go down in history," their father, an outspoken pacifist, told them after their conviction. "There is such a thing as justice despite this. I am proud of both of you." Stock photos from the period are adeptly interspersed with personal snapshots and portraits to create a strong visual component. VERDICT A highly readable and well-documented overview of a fascinating aspect of World War II.-Bob Hassett, Luther Jackson Middle School, Falls Church, VA

    Copyright 2016 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
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We Will Not Be Silent
We Will Not Be Silent
The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler
Russell Freedman
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