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Although Phillips altered one panel to reduce the number of document images in order to enlarge the remainder for better legibility, the others are the same—despite more than a decade of new research.“While there has been continuing scholarship in the history,” Phillips says, “most of it addresses local-level implementation/persecution that has not fundamentally affected the overall storyline presented in the exhibition.” To date, the exhibit has appeared in twenty-seven states and thirty-nine cities.He pursued the enforcement of the criminal law codes.A document from 1936 deals with the creation of a secret office to combat homosexuals and abortion: both threats to the population growth that the Nazis advocated.The Nazis did not, Phillips says, look at gay men as amoral.Rather, they saw homosexuality as a weakness, a disease.
Only when Hitler came to power in 1933 did the Germans begin to enforce Paragraph 175 of the criminal law code, which banned homosexual activity, described as an “unnatural indecency between men.” While the law had been on the books since 1871, little had been done to punish homosexuals.
Had it been a few months later, he would have been arrested because he was Jewish. Although Phillips identified charts and documents, which could be reproduced, photographs were harder to find.
Included in the show are reproductions of lithographs by Richard Grune, a Bauhaus-trained artist, who was arrested, sent to prison, and then to the camps.
a" data-cycle-paused="true" data-cycle-prev="#gslideshow_prev" data-cycle-next="#gslideshow_next" data-cycle-pager="#gslideshow_pager" data-cycle-pager-template=" " data-cycle-speed="750" data-cycle-caption="#gslideshow_captions" data-cycle-caption-template="" By Roslyn Bernstein Curator Ted Phillips, Director of Exhibitions at the William Levine Family Institute for Holocaust Education at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC, was in town recently to open the exhibit at the Museum of Jewish Heritage.
It’s an exhibit that has been traveling since the fall of 2002—this is a show that has been on the road for more than a dozen years.