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Branded by the Pink Triangle
Cover of Branded by the Pink Triangle
Branded by the Pink Triangle
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A history of the persecution of gay men by the Nazi regime during the Holocaust. When the Nazis came to power in Europe, the lives of homosexuals came to be ruled by fear as raids, arrests, prison...
A history of the persecution of gay men by the Nazi regime during the Holocaust. When the Nazis came to power in Europe, the lives of homosexuals came to be ruled by fear as raids, arrests, prison...
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  • A history of the persecution of gay men by the Nazi regime during the Holocaust. When the Nazis came to power in Europe, the lives of homosexuals came to be ruled by fear as raids, arrests, prison sentences and expulsions became the daily reality. When the concentration camps were built, homosexuals were imprisoned along with Jews. The pink triangle, sewn onto prison uniforms, became the symbol of their persecution. This book combines historical research with first-person accounts and individual stories to bring this time to life for readers. From the first chapter, with its story of a young Jewish girl who was rescued from the depths of despair and starvation in the camps by a fellow prisoner who wore the pink triangle, to the last, entitled It Gets Better, which outlines the strides forward in gay rights made in the decades since the war, the feeling of bravery and perseverance in the face of inhuman cruelty shines through.

 

Awards-

About the Author-

  • Ken Setterington is a storyteller, author, children's book reviewer, and a librarian. He was the first Children and Youth Advocate for Library Services for the Toronto Public Library. He has been on the award committee for the Newbery, Caldecott and Sibert awards. The author of the picture book Mom and Mum are Getting Married!, Ken lives with his partner in Toronto.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    An impassioned and cogent history of the persecution of gay men during the Holocaust. Setterington opens with the riveting anecdote of a Jewish survivor of Auschwitz who was rescued and nurtured by a man with a pink triangle on his uniform. From this beginning, he moves back in time to introduce readers to early-20th-century Berlin, a bastion of gay tolerance despite the anti-homosexual law known as Paragraph 175. He goes on to chronicle the Nazis' crackdown on gay men, their deportation to concentration camps, the experiences of both Jewish and Gentile gay men, and the aftermath of the war. Most cruelly, gay survivors were treated as criminals rather than victims, since their liberators viewed homosexuality as a crime. Illuminating the historical overview are stories of specific young (mostly teenage) gay men, taken mostly from memoirs. They are related with immediacy, personalizing the potentially mind-numbing catalog of horrors that make up any Holocaust account. Details, too, take readers into the heart of the insanity: Paragraph 175 was enforced in Western European "Aryan" territories such as the Netherlands but not in Poland and Eastern Europe, where they were seen as part of the strategy to undermine the already-"degraded" Slavic peoples. Never downplaying the appalling cataclysm that was the murder of 6 million Jews, Setterington nevertheless effectively makes the case for history's need to remember Hitler's other victims as well. Despite its brevity, a remarkably informative and necessary work. (notes, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 12 & up) COPYRIGHT(1) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    July 1, 2013

    Gr 9 Up-Stories from the Holocaust are universally heartbreaking and horrifying, and this one is no different. The pink triangle was used by the Nazis to identify homosexual prisoners in the concentration camps, and here Setterington shows how it has been adopted by the gay movement as a symbol of strength and pride. He describes how German society's relatively tolerant attitudes of the 1920s grew less so as Hitler and the Nazis came into power and began a quest to purify the "Aryan race." By weaving the individual experiences into a broader account of the treatment and persecution of homosexuals by the Nazi regime, the author provides a compelling and evocative narrative. Culling first-person accounts from concentration camp survivors, he is able to paint a picture of the fear and harassment (and for some, ultimately death) that these individuals and their families endured. The writing is succinct but detailed enough to satisfy researchers. Period photographs, a lengthy time line, and an extensive bibliography round out the strengths of this thoughtful, informative work.-Jody Kopple, Shady Hill School, Cambridge, MA

    Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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