Traute Lafrenz

Last updated

Traute Lafrenz (born May 3, 1919) is a German-American physician and anthroposophist, who was a member of the White Rose anti-Nazi group during World War II. [1]

Anthroposophy philosophy founded by Rudolf Steiner

Anthroposophy is a philosophy founded by the 19th century esotericist Rudolf Steiner that postulates the existence of an objective, intellectually comprehensible spiritual world, accessible to human experience. Followers of anthroposophy aim to develop mental faculties of spiritual discovery through a mode of thought independent of sensory experience. They also aim to present their ideas in a manner verifiable by rational discourse and specifically seek a precision and clarity in studying the spiritual world mirroring that obtained by natural historians in investigations of the physical world.

White Rose non-violent, intellectual resistance group in Nazi Germany, consisting of students from the University of Munich and their philosophy professor

The White Rose was a non-violent, intellectual resistance group in the Third Reich led by a group of students and a professor at the University of Munich. The group conducted an anonymous leaflet and graffiti campaign that called for active opposition to the Nazi party regime. Their activities started in Munich on 27 June 1942, and ended with the arrest of the core group by the Gestapo on 18 February 1943. They, as well as other members and supporters of the group who carried on distributing the pamphlets, faced show trials by the Nazi People's Court (Volksgerichtshof), and many of them were sentenced to death or imprisonment.

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

She was born in Hamburg. Together with Heinz Kucharski, Lafrenz studied under Erna Stahl at the Lichtwark-Gymnasium, a liberal arts school in Hamburg. [2] When coeducation was abolished in 1937, Lafrenz moved to a convent school, where she and classmate Margaretha Rothe graduated in Easter 1938. Together with Rothe, Lafrenz began to study medicine at the University of Hamburg in the summer semester of 1939. After the semester she worked in Pomerania, where she met Alexander Schmorell who had begun studying in the summer of 1939 at the Hamburg University's Medical School but continued his studies from 1939/40 in Munich.

Hamburg City in Germany

Hamburg is the second-largest city in Germany with a population of over 1.8 million.

University of Hamburg university in Hamburg, Germany

The University of Hamburg is a comprehensive university in Hamburg, Germany. It was founded on 28 March 1919, having grown out of the previous General lecture system and the Colonial Institute of Hamburg as well as the Akademic Gymnasium. In spite of its relatively short history, six Nobel Prize Winners and serials of scholars are affiliated to the university. The University of Hamburg is the biggest research and education institution in Northern Germany and one of the most extensive universities in Germany. The main campus is located in the central district of Rotherbaum, with affiliated institutes and research centres spread around the city state.

Alexander Schmorell active within the White Rose non-violent resistance group in Nazi Germany

Alexander Schmorell was one of five Munich University students who formed a resistance group known as White Rose which was active against Germany's Nazi regime from June 1942 to February 1943. In 2012, he was glorified as a saint and passion bearer by the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia.

In May 1941 Lafrenz moved to Munich to study there, where she got to know Hans Scholl and Christoph Probst. [2] In her opposition to the Nazi regime, she found inspiration in the writings of Rudolf Steiner. [3] She attended many talks and discussions of the White Rose group, including those with Kurt Huber. In late 1942 she brought the third White Rose flyer to Hamburg [2] and redistributed them via her former classmate Heinz Kucharski. When on 18 February 1943 Hans and Sophie Scholl were arrested in Munich University, Traute Lafrenz also was put under investigation by the Gestapo. She was arrested shortly afterwards on 15 March, together with Alexander Schmorell and Kurt Huber and sentenced to one year in prison on 19 April 1943. [2] During her interrogation by the Gestapo Lafrenz succeeded in disguising the full extent of her involvement in the leaflet distribution. After her release she was arrested again by the Gestapo and imprisoned again. [2]

Hans Scholl German pacifist, executed by Nazi Germany

Hans Fritz Scholl was a founding member of the White Rose resistance movement in Nazi Germany. He was executed by the Nazis.

Christoph Probst White Rose member

Christoph Ananda Probst was a German student of medicine and member of the White Rose resistance group.

Rudolf Steiner Austrian esotericist

Rudolf Joseph Lorenz Steiner was an Austrian philosopher, social reformer, architect, and esotericist. Steiner gained initial recognition at the end of the nineteenth century as a literary critic and published philosophical works including The Philosophy of Freedom. At the beginning of the twentieth century he founded an esoteric spiritual movement, anthroposophy, with roots in German idealist philosophy and theosophy; other influences include Goethean science and Rosicrucianism.

In 1947 she emigrated to the United States, [4] completing her medical studies at Saint Joseph's Hospital in San Francisco, California. After moving to Chicago, she served from 1972 to 1994 as head of Esperanza School, a private, therapeutic day school serving students with developmental disabilities between the ages of 5 and 21. She has been involved in the anthroposophical movement in the United States for more than half a century. [3] She is now retired and lives on Yonges Island near Meggett, South Carolina.

Chicago City in Illinois, United States

Chicago, officially the City of Chicago, is the most populous city in Illinois and the third most populous city in the United States. With an estimated population of 2,716,450 (2017), it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States. Chicago is the county seat of Cook County, the second most populous county in the United States, and the principal city of the Chicago metropolitan area, which is often referred to as "Chicagoland." The Chicago metropolitan area, at nearly 10 million people, is the third-largest in the United States; the fourth largest in North America ; and the third largest metropolitan area in the world by land area.

Meggett, South Carolina Town in South Carolina, United States

Meggett is a town in Charleston County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 1,226 at the 2010 census. Meggett is part of the Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville metropolitan area.

Literature

International Standard Book Number Unique numeric book identifier

The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier which is intended to be unique. Publishers purchase ISBNs from an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency.

Related Research Articles

Sophie Scholl White Rose member

Sophia Magdalena Scholl was a German student and anti-Nazi political activist, active within the White Rose non-violent resistance group in Nazi Germany.

Kurt Huber university professor and member of the White Rose group

Kurt Huber was a university professor and resistance fighter with the anti-Nazi group White Rose. For his involvement he was imprisoned and guillotined.

<i>Sophie Scholl – The Final Days</i> 2005 film by Marc Rothemund

Sophie Scholl – The Final Days is a 2005 German historical drama film directed by Marc Rothemund and written by Fred Breinersdorfer. It is about the last days in the life of Sophie Scholl, a 21-year-old member of the anti-Nazi non-violent student resistance group the White Rose, part of the German Resistance movement. She was found guilty of high treason by the People’s Court and executed the same day, 22 February 1943.

Hans Conrad Leipelt active within the White Rose non-violent resistance group in Nazi Germany

Hans Conrad Leipelt was a member of the White Rose resistance group in Nazi Germany.

Stadelheim Prison architectural structure

Stadelheim Prison, in Munich's Giesing district, is one of the largest prisons in Germany.

The White Rose was written by Lillian Garrett-Groag and premiered in 1991 at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego, Calif. The play chronicles the arrest, interrogation and eventual execution of a group of University of Munich students who protested the Nazi regime at the height of World War II. The students assigned to themselves the name White Rose.

Halina Szwarcde domoKłąb (1923–2002) - was a member of the Polish resistance during the Second World War, working undercover first under the pseudonym Ryszard, then Jacek II. Postwar, she became a professor of medicine in gerontology, and in 1970/1971, the prorector of the Józef Piłsudski University of Physical Education in Warsaw.

Hans and Sophie Scholl brother and sister who were members of the White Rose

Hans and Sophie Scholl, often referred to in German as die Geschwister Scholl, were a brother and sister who were members of the White Rose, a student group in Munich that was active in the non-violent resistance movement in Nazi Germany, especially in distributing flyers against the war and the dictatorship of Adolf Hitler. In post-war Germany, Hans and Sophie Scholl are recognized as symbols of the Christian German resistance movement against the totalitarian Nazi regime.

Marie-Luise Jahn was a German physician and a member of the anti-Nazi resistance movement White Rose.

Lilo Ramdohr Member of White Rose

Lieselotte ″Lilo″ Fürst-Ramdohr was a member of the Munich branch of the student resistance group White Rose in Nazi Germany. She was born in Aschersleben.

Robert Mohr was an interrogation specialist of the Gestapo. He headed the special commission responsible for the search and arrest of the White Rose, part of the German Resistance to Nazism.

Falk Harnack German stage and film director

Falk Harnack was a German director and screenwriter. During Germany's Nazi era, he was also active with the German Resistance and toward the end of World War II, the partisans in Greece. Harnack was from a family of scholars, artists and scientists, several of whom were active in the anti-Nazi Resistance and paid with their lives.

Eugen Grimminger

Franz Eugen Grimminger, was a member of the White Rose resistance group in Nazi Germany.

Margaretha Reichardt, also known as Grete Reichardt, was a textile artist, weaver, and graphic designer from Erfurt, Germany. She was one of the most important designers to emerge from the Bauhaus design school's weaving workshop in Dessau, Germany. She spent most of her adult life running her own independent weaving workshop in Erfurt, which was under Nazi rule and then later part of communist East Germany.

Susanne Zeller, née Hirzel, was a member of the resistance group "White Rose", for which she was arrested and convicted, but avoided the death penalty.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 "Traute Lafrenz". German Resistance Memorial Center. Retrieved 25 February 2012.
  2. 1 2 "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-04-25. Retrieved 2011-11-14.
  3. "Traute Lafrenz-Page". Der Spiegel (in German). Retrieved 29 September 2010.
Inge Scholl German activist

Inge Aicher-Scholl, born in present-day Crailsheim, Germany, was the daughter of Robert Scholl, mayor of Forchtenberg, and elder sister of Hans and Sophie Scholl, who studied at the University of Munich in 1942, and were core members of the White Rose student resistance movement in Nazi Germany. Inge Scholl wrote several books about the White Rose after the war. However, according to the Center for White Rose Studies, she did not even "so much as listen to her siblings' talk", when they tried to convince her to take part in 1942.