Homosexuality in the Third Reich



Memorial to Gay Victims of the Holocaust in Berlin. Its inscription reads: Totgeschlagen – Totgeschwiegen (Struck Dead – Hushed-Up). 


Berenbaum, Michael, and Abrahan J. Peck. “The Pink Triangle.” The Holocaust and History: The Known, the Unknown, the Disputed, and the Reexamined. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1998. 345-57. Print. “The persecution of homosexuals was aimed at preventing sexual behavior between men and men, not so much at the homosexual as a human being. Same-sex relations, precluding as they do biological reproduction, were antithetical to the demographic goals the Nazis had established for the German nation.”

Boden, Eliot H. “The Enemy Within: Homosexuality in the Third Reich, 1933-1945.” Wesleyan University. 2011. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://digitalcommons.iwu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1138&context=constructing>. “From 1933 to 1945, the Nazi regime in Germany targeted homosexuals, particularly men, as enemies of the state. Homoerotic lifestyles fundamentally contravened Nazi ideals of racial and social purity. Same-sex relationships were considered intolerable because they subverted Adolph Hitler‟s utopian vision of a unified Aryan society based on German tradition, Christian morality, and unwavering dedication to the Nazi party-state. Even though German psychologists disagreed on the root causes of same-sex attraction, the top echelons of the Nazi civil and military command widely viewed homosexuality as a social affliction and a political threat. Homosexuals were an extensively persecuted minority in the Third Reich, although Nazi ideology and policy regarding homoerotic intimacy were by no means consistent or clear.”

Briskin, Dennis. “Doctors Pained by Exhibit on Medical Testing in WWII.” Northern California Jewish Bulletin 1992 aug 28: 8. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “‘It’s just horrifying and astonishing to learn that physicians could have been in any way involved in these horrors,’ the 56-year-old cardiology professor said, as he viewed ‘The Value of the Human Being’ exhibit on medical practices in Germany in the Third Reich. The exhibit, brought here from Germany by the Holocaust Center of Northern California, the U.C. School of Medicine and the Goethe Institute in cooperation with the Central Pacific region of the Anti-Defamation League and the Holocaust Education Fund of San Francisco, has attracted hundreds of visitors each day to the five panels in the Medical Sciences Building lobby and the remainder of the 44-panel exhibit in the new UCSF Library. The medically sponsored murder began as a way to rid society of unwanted elements — the mentally ill, physically disabled, Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals and political opponents. Medical and genetic research formed the cornerstone of the Nazi goal to strengthen Germany by eliminating ‘weak’ genes and breeding out certain elements.”

Canning, Richard. “Homoerotic Art of the Third Reich.” The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide 14.1 (Jan): 50. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “Conrades makes the point that the undoubtedly heterosexual Breker exposed himself to the aesthetic demimonde-populated by Jews, homosexuals, a wide racial mix, and so on-which contradicts the idea that he was fundamentally sympathetic to Nazism’s social politics, and in particular the Holocaust. The difficulty with this reading of his youth is that Breker not only survived the implicit damage to his career wrought by his closeness to Hitler-he died in 1991 -but he also lived long enough to see the resurgence in right-wing groups in the 1980′s, and associated himself and his artistic legacy with them.”

Coyle, Katy. “Invisibility in Nazi Germany.” The Lesbian Review of Books III.2 (1997 Jan 31): 6. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “Although in the last decade gay and lesbian history has grown by leaps and bounds, very little work exists on gay and lesbian experience during the rise and reign of the Nazis in Germany. The work that has been done focuses primarily on the experiences of men accused of or arrested for homosexual activities. Given these obstacles, [Claudia Schoppmann]‘s new book, Days of Masquerade: Life Stories of Lesbian Women During the Third Reich, breaks significant new ground. Gathering lesbian experiences from diverse sources, Schoppman gives voice to ten women’s stories, essentially breaking the silence of the last half-century. The book consists of a broad introduction to the history of the period followed by a collection of ten narratives reconstructed from interviews and archival fragments. Intending to ‘contribute to advancing the social history of lesbians in Germany…[and] to convey to readers an impression of what it could have meant to live as a lesbian during the Third Reich,’”

Ellenzweig, Allen. “The Occupied Closet.” The Harvard Gay & Lesbian Review 3.1 (1996 Jan 31): 36. Web. 22 Sept. 2013.  Born in 1923, [Pierre Seel] was the youngest of five sons in a conservative Catholic family of the Alsace region, that corner of France always vulnerable to Prussian intrusion. His parents owned a “highly respected” pastry shop in the town of Mulhouse, a decidedly bourgeois locale that, as Seel describes it, would be the last to favor any sort of nonconformity. By the time he was a teenager, though, Pierre had come to terms with being homosexual. This occurred after “a cycle of confession and communion” with the local priest, who was more interested in hearing the exquisite details of Seel’s guilt-ridden confessions than in offering any spiritual succor. So, by 1940, Seel turned to the Zazou style, wearing a wardrobe that was “refined rather than rebellious” and long hair “slicked down on the skull …  “If I, Pierre Seel, Deported Homosexual” were but a litany of the atrocities committed upon a single gay youth caught up in the Nazi maw, it might shock us anew with the devious sadism of the Third Reich, but it would not add to our understanding of the psychological damage imposed on those who lived to bear witness. It is because Seel’s story continues after his release from camp until the present day that it gathers a terrible, depressing, spiraling momentum downward. For Seel’s narrative is nothing less than an indictment of the official silence that shrouded an uncomfortable truth and imposed upon Seel a terrible complicity. For example, although his family came to understand that Pierre was hauled off by the Gestapo for being homosexual, they would never acknowledge it aloud–not when he was unexpectedly released from Schirmeck-Vorbruch and welcomed home to the dinner table, not when he returned from three years in the German army, into which he had been conscripted. Nor did Seel insist upon disclosing the indignities he suffered, but instead tortured himself with an enforced silence that permitted no psychological or spiritual reprieve. And anyway, who cared?

Ettelson, Todd Richard, and Geoff Canning, Kathleen Eley. “The Nazi ‘new Man’: Embodying Masculinity and Regulating Sexuality in the SA and SS, 1930–1939.” Thesis. University of Michigan. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses (2002): 471-71 P. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “This dissertation argues that constructions of masculinity and male sexuality played a central role in shaping the conduct of men in the SA and SS, as well as the identities of those institutions more broadly. I pursue two main lines of inquiry throughout. First, I explore the ways in which these constructions shifted at different points in Nazism’s development and within the diverse institutional cultures. My aim here is to map the importance of masculinity and male sexuality on to the history of the Nazi state’s consolidation and evolution of institutional identities. Second, I analyze the complex types of power relationship that constructions of masculinity and male sexuality nourished and sustained. I contend that these were predominantly regulative and disciplinary in nature, geared towards producing and shaping individual behaviors that were profoundly linked to the Nazi state’s formation and goals. … The project begins by considering how the mediation of SA men as aggressive but vulnerable helped mobilize them as violent during the late Weimar period. It then examines how the mediation of the SA leadership as homosexual figured into the consolidation of the Nazi state during the SA purge of June 1934. Next, I analyze shifting visions of masculinity in the SS and SA between 1934 and 1939, tracing out their connections to Nazi racism and the state repressive apparatus. The final chapters also focus on the years between 1934 and 1939, examining the regulation of marriage within the SS, persecution of male homosexuals in Nazi institutions, and the state’s attempts to punish ‘ordinary’ Germans who gossiped about Hitler’s sexuality.”

“Experiments Begin on Homosexuals at Buchenwald.” History.com. A&E Television Networks, 1 Oct. 1944. Web. 10 Nov. 2012. <http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/experiments-begin-on-homosexuals-at-buchenwald>. “On this day [Oct. 1] in 1944, the first of two sets of medical experiments involving castration are performed on homosexuals at the Buchenwald concentration camp, near Weimar, Germany.”

Giles, Geoffrey J. “The Denial of Homosexuality: Same-sex Incidents in Himmler’s SS and Police.” Journal of the History of Sexuality 11.1/2 (Jan): 256-90. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “The number of Schutzstaffel (SS) members apprehended on charges of homosexuality is small, especially given the constantly burgeoning size of Heinrich Himmler’s private army. Yet the cases are significant, since the way they were treated can help people understand how the Nazi leadership perceived and dealt with sexuality.”

Goldmann, A. J. “War Memorial: Taking a Trip to the Center of Evil.” Wall Street Journal 2010 jun 08. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. [T]o many of this city’s other World War II monuments, Typography of Terror focuses on the perpetrators of Nazi atrocities, many of whom had their offices right on this street, including Heinrich Himmler, Reinhard Heydrich and Adolf Eichmann. Klaus Wowereit, Berlin’s mayor, called Topography of Terror ‘an active place of thought and remembrance’ that will complement Berlin’s Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the nearby Memorial to Homosexuals Persecuted Under Nazism and the coming memorial to the Sinti and Roma, or Gypsy, victims.”

Hagwood, Rod Stafford. “Rising Action’s Bent Haunting: Martin Sherman’s 30-year-old Play about the Third Reich’s Sadistic Persecution of Homosexuals Retains Its Gut-punching Impact.” McClatchy – Tribune Business News 2009 jun 08. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “The pre-war portrait collage of Holocaust victims grabs you by the collar and draws you up close to the horror. [...] although at times the scenes ring just slightly ‘acterly’ (they never seem truly exhausted from hauling rocks from one pile to the other; the love scene almost deters into a poetry reading) McGlothlin and Buzzeo effortlessly hold the stage.

Heineman, Elizabeth D. “Sexuality and Nazism: The Doubly Unspeakable?” Journal of the History of Sexuality 11.1/2 (Jan): 22-66. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “The history of sexuality in Nazi Germany unites two subjects vulnerable to sensationalist coverage: sex and Nazism. Historians are uncomfortably aware that their work on this subject might be utilized to sensationalize the grim subject of Nazi Germany; however, questions about the relationship of sexual experience to Germans’ encounter with Naziism and to the regime’s successes and failure are important. Topics include same-sex desire; persecution, homoeroticism, and the Mannerbund.”

“History of Gay Men in Nazi Germany and the Holocaust.” History of Gay Men in Nazi Germany and the Holocaust. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://www.princeton.edu/~achaney/tmve/wiki100k/docs/History_of_gay_men_in_Nazi_Germany_and_the_Holocaust.html>. “In the 1920s, homosexual people in Germany, particularly in Berlin, enjoyed a higher level of freedom and acceptance than anywhere else in the world. However, upon the rise of Adolf Hitler, gay men and, to a lesser extent, lesbians, were two of the numerous groups targeted by the Nazi Party and were ultimately among Holocaust victims. Beginning in 1933, gay organizations were banned, scholarly books about homosexuality, and sexuality in general, were burned, and homosexuals within the Nazi Party itself were murdered. The Gestapo compiled lists of homosexuals, who were compelled to sexually conform to the ‘German norm.’”

Holzgraebe, Kerstin. “An Anti-Social Prototype.” The Lesbian Review of Books II.1 (1995 Oct 31): 30. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. The Nazis were obsessed with family and population matters. They viewed women as naturally and, above all, sexually dependent on men, their main sexual characteristic being passivity. A “centuries-old patriarchal tradition” helped them to institutionalize this fixed opinion legally. Nevertheless, debates about the extension of 175 to lesbians came up when a new penal code was discussed in 1936 as well as when lesbians were being included into reeducation programs at the Berlin Institute for Psychological Research and Psychotherapy. Jurists like Rudolf Klare, a SS-Scharfuehrer who received a doctorate for his thesis on “Homosexuality and the Criminal Law,” were at the forefront because, according to them, lesbians, or “congenital tribadies” as he called them, intentionally seduced heterosexual women, thus preventing them from having children. It was even suggested to mate them compulsorily “in order to cure them”. Other experts specializing in population policy estimated this danger “not nearly as great,” for “a woman who is so seduced does not lastingly withdraw from normal sexual intercourse but remains as useful as before in terms of population policy.” In contrast to male homosexuals, lesbians remained “capable of reproduction,” “always prepared for sex.” … They declared that “the practice of this vice impairs a woman’s psyche far less than it does a man’s.” The purpose of the penal code was “simply to protect fertility.” They regarded the prosecution of lesbians as useless because there was no danger to “sound heredity” or a threat to the birth rate. … Women were successfully threatened and intimidated with possible “masculinization”  in order to maintain the heterosexist social structure and the regime’s stability. It was Himmler, the homophobic leader of the SS, who used to make declining gender polarities responsible for homosexuality; in his opinion, the lack of “feminine charms”  was the reason for male homosexuality. Therefore many lesbians conformed to the general notion of femininity in their appearance or even married formally. Although lesbians were not prosecuted to the same extent as gays, their clubs, organizations and magazines, which had flourished in 1920s, suffered a complete breakdown. Some lesbians met only privately, others moved or broke off their contacts altogether.

“Homosexuals and Nazi Germany.” History Learning Site. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/homosexuals_nazi_germany.htm>. “Homosexuality was classed as a ‘degenerate form of behaviour’ in Nazi Germany that threatened the nation’s ‘disciplined masculinity.’ Under Nazi law, homosexuality was deemed non-Aryan and as such homosexuals were far more persecuted in Nazi Germany than under the Weimar regime. Ironically it had been the support of Ernst Rőehm, a known homosexual, and his SA followers that had greatly helped Hitler gain power on January 30th 1933.”

“Homosexuals in Nazi Germany.” Simon Wiesenthal Center Multimedia Learning Center. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://motlc.wiesenthal.com/site/pp.asp?c=gvKVLcMVIuG&b=395203>. “The homosexual victims of the Holocaust have not received due attention. The Nazi genocide of Jews and Gypsies, their murder of ‘asocials’ and political prisoners, their persecution and murder of various other nationals not destined for total extermination -all have overshadowed their persecution and attempted liquidation of male homosexuals. Only now has a study of this neglected topic begun on the basis of the few surviving documents, interviews, and memoirs. The intolerance and criminalization that persisted after 1945, along with the shame and fear that the homosexual survivors and their families felt, prevented most homosexuals from testifying. In the immediate postwar period, many of those who wrote about the concentration camps, as well as the criminal courts and administrative tribunals that dealt with the crimes committed in the camps, treated homosexuals as common criminals, justly punished for violating the penal code of the Third Reich.”

Jensen, Erik N. “The Pink Triangle and Political Consciousness: Gays, Lesbians, and the Memory of Nazi Persecution.” Journal of the History of Sexuality 11.1/2 (Jan): 319-49. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “The pink triangle insignia identified homosexual inmates in the Nazi concentration camps. Jensen traces the evolution over the past thirty years of collective memories in both the American and German gay communities in order to show what these communities have remembered and why.”

Lipman, Steve. “Hitler’s Other Victims: There Wasn’t, Some Say, Just One Final Solution. Fifty Years after the End of World War II, Attention Turns to the Long-overlooked Suffering Non-Jews Targeted by the Nazis.” The New York Jewish Week 1997 may 02: 30. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. The permanent exhibition of the Holocaust Memorial Museum describes the fate of Gypsies, Poles, homosexuals, people with disabilities, Jehovah’s Witnesses, political and religious dissidents, and Soviet POWs. Exhibits in New York’s Holocaust Museum, according to director David Altshuler, “will relate that groups other than Jews were persecuted and murdered by the Nazis.” The Museum of Tolerance at the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles also includes the experience of non-Jewish victims. Spielberg’s oral history project is preserving the stories of “all the victim groups we can get hold of,” Berenbaum says. His words echo those of many Gypsy spokesmen — Jews and Gypsies shared an unenviable status as the Nazis’ primary victims. In the Nazis’ racial hierarchy, Gypsies, who threatened the biological purity of the “superior” Aryan race, ranked between “subhuman” Slavs and “antihuman” Jews.

Lipman, Steve. “Rabbis To Museum: Remove Gay Exhibit; Holocaust Memorial Expects to Open without Delay despite Lawsuit.” The New York Jewish Week 1997 sep 12: 14. Web. 22 Sept. 2013.  “We certainly believe he is wrong concerning the constitutionality of the museum’s funding,” said [Howard Rubenstein], who called the museum’s display about the fate of homosexuals in the Third Reich a “very brief mention among other [non-Jewish] groups” targeted by the Nazis. David Zwiebel, general counsel for Agudath Israel of America, called the lawsuit’s claims “somewhere between baffling and highly offensive,” and said it does not “reflect the consensus of the Orthodox community.” If the museum does equate the wartime suffering of Jews and homosexuals, “that will be offensive to us as well.” If its exhibit simply lists homosexuals among other non-Jewish victims, he said, “I don’t see how we can take offense at that.”

Micheler, Stefan. “Homophobic Propaganda and the Denunciation of Same-sex-desiring Men under National Socialism.” Journal of the History of Sexuality 11.1/2 (Jan): 95-130. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. Micheler focuses on evidence from Hamburg, which, as a seaport and the second largest city in the German Reich, was reputed to be a “homosexual stronghold.” He develops a refined chronology of the evolution of homophobic propaganda and its dissemination, to specify more precisely the stereotypes that were mobilized against those classed as “homosexual,” and to investigate the relationships between regime propaganda and denunciations at the grass roots.

“Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945, Frequently Asked Questions.” Dallas Holocaust Museum-Center for Education and Tolerance. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://www.dallasholocaustmuseum.org/index.php/news-events/story/nazi_persecution_of_homosexuals_1933-1945_frequently_asked_questions/>. “Through reproductions of some 250 historic photographs and documents, Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945 examines the rationale, means, and impact of the Nazi regime’s attempt to eradicate homosexuality that left thousands dead and shattered the lives of many more. Curated by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the exhibit offers visitors the opportunity to explore the Holocaust from a lesser known perspective, demonstrating the many forms of bullying and discrimination that occur in the absence of UPSTANDERS (the opposite of bystanders—those who stood by during the Holocaust as observers only and did nothing). Following are frequently-asked-questions and responses about the exhibit and the brutal Nazi campaign against people who did not fit the Nazi vision of a ‘master Aryan race.’”

“Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945.” USHMM.org. United States Holocaust Memorial Muswum. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://www.ushmm.org/exhibition/persecution-of-homosexuals/>. “The Nazi campaign against homosexuality targeted the more than one million German men who, the state asserted, carried a ‘degeneracy’ that threatened the ‘disciplined masculinity’ of Germany. Denounced as ‘antisocial parasites’ and as ‘enemies of the state,’ more than 100,000 men were arrested under a broadly interpreted law against homosexuality. Approximately 50,000 men served prison terms as convicted homosexuals, while an unknown number were institutionalized in mental hospitals. Others—perhaps hundreds—were castrated under court order or coercion. Analyses of fragmentary records suggest that between 5,000 and 15,000 homosexual men were imprisoned in concentration camps, where many died from starvation, disease, exhaustion, beatings, and murder.”

“Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals: Intro.” UCSB Department of History. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://www.history.ucsb.edu/faculty/marcuse/classes/33d/projects/homo/Introduction.htm>. “When the word ‘Holocaust’” is mentioned, the first statistic that comes to mind is that of the six million Jewish victims who died in either concentration camps or by other Nazi tactics. However, five million additional individuals were persecuted, including a significant proportion of homosexuals. Our report does not include female homosexuals because at this time sexual relations between women was not illegal and therefore they were not persecuted for their sexuality.”

Newton, Alistair. “Children of a Lesser Holocaust.” The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide 19.1 (Jan): 18-20. Web. 22 Sept. 2013.  In December of 2008, the French gay magazine Têtu heralded Brazda, who survived three years at Buchenwald concentration camp, as “Le dernier ‘triangle rose.’”* After the passing of Pierre Seel, a survivor of the camp Schirmeck-Vorbriick, Brazda became the last documented survivor of the Nazi persecution of homosexuals. Rethinking Homosexuality under National Socialism (2009). In his groundbreaking research, Rüdiger Lautmann tracked the survival rate and social position of gay men in the camps.

Peukert, Detlev. Inside Nazi Germany: Conformity, Opposition, and Racism in Everyday Life. New Haven: Yale UP, 1987. Print. “In this quirky survey of daily life in the Third Reich, Peukert, who teaches at the University of Essen, attempts to help readers ‘understand better a generation which it would be unjust (and unhelpful for learning lessons for the future) to condemn . …” The raw material he presents such as circulation statistics in libraries following the public book-burnings and a judge’s official view of ‘negative human material’ and what should be done about ‘it’ is more useful to historians than to general readers. Although he discusses the origins of the Nazis’ deadly enmity toward homosexuals and ‘the facists’ stereotyped fantasies of violence,’ quoted citations make the deeper impression: Himmler’s decree banishing ‘young swing fans’ to a concentration camp, for example, or diary records of dreams by German citizens intent on avoiding conscious confrontation with the sinister effects of National Socialist policies. Illustrations.”

Plant, Richard. “A Memorial to the Victims with the Pink Triangle: Post War Germany Slow to Come to Terms with the Gay Holocaust.” Lambda Book Report jan 1992: 14. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “Of course, no gay person expected that the hatred against homosexuals would be swept away with the rubble of the bombed cities, but at least gay men and lesbians could hope for a break with the Nazi ideology of the past. That such a break did not happen is the fault of the founding fathers — and mothers — of the new West Germany. They decided to keep the barbarous Nazi version of the laws against love between men. They did this despite the resolution of a parliamentary commission in 1929 to leave unpunished so-called ‘regular same-sex activities among males.’ Every educated German knew that in 1929 a large number of Germany’s most prominent scientists and artists — Albert Einstein, Thomas Mann, Martin Buber, etc. — had signed a petition to throw out those medieval injunctions. But the new West German leaders decided against the spirit of the Weimar Republic. By keeping the Nazi laws, they confirmed that the brownshirted hangmen who had carried out the ‘eugenic liquidation’ of homosexuals had done the right thing.”

Porter, Jack N. “Genocide of Homosexuals.” Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies : University of Minnesota. 10 Oct. 1998. Web. 23 Sept. 2013. <http://www.chgs.umn.edu/educational/homosexuals.html>. “There were many kinds of victims in the Nazi camps. Different groups wore different triangles, and different triangles denoted different ‘crimes.’ Jews wore yellow stars but also red political triangles. One of the biggest groups consisted of Germans who were made to wear black triangles, meaning saboteurs. Green triangles were worn by murderers. There were other triangles or strips for Jehovah’s Witnesses, vagrants, emigrants, Gypsies, ‘race defiler (male),’ ‘race defiler (female),’ escape suspects, special inmates, repeaters (those who were incarcerated more than once), and members of armed forces. A bewildering array of stigmatization.”

Pursell, Tim. “Queer Eyes and Wagnerian Guys: Homoeroticism in the Art of the Third Reich.” Journal of the History of Sexuality 17.1 (Jan 2008): 110-37,175. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. George Mosse has described how male national symbols have often included homoerotic elements such as intense male friendship and the embrace, particularly when the idea of fraternity was regarded as a key signifier of respectability.7 John Fout has suggested that while male bonding was praised in the Wilhelmine era, homophobia played a crucial role in a social policy intended to construct public morality without recourse to a specifically Christian morality. National Socialist interest in masculinity stems in part from these earlier concerns in Germany. Homophile arguments were made in the same cultural atmosphere as homophobic ones, though both homosexuals and Nazis could be concerned with racial improvement and idealized masculinity even when their agendas differed. … The queering of ideal male bodies represents the sort of adaptation to domination and the negotiation of a identity described by Pierre Bourdieu for working-class taste in his classic text Distinction. Many within the homosexual subculture of Nazi Germany committed themselves to the visual ideals of the dominant culture.”

Seifert, Dorthe. “Between Silence and License: The Representation of the National Socialist Persecution of Homosexuality in Anglo-American Fiction and Film.” History and Memory 15.2 (Fall 2003): 94-129. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. ‘Public knowledge and awareness of the persecution of homosexuality in National Socialist Germany remained until 1979, when the play Bent by Martin Sherman dramatized for the first time the lives of homosexuals during the Nazi era for Anglo-American theater audiences. Here, Seifert discusses how contemporary Anglo-American fiction has tried to understand the persecution of homosexuality in Nazi Germany in terms of the better-known history of the events that have been named the Holocaust or the Shoah. He investigates the nature of the specific epistemological framework that the writers have adopted for their understanding of the historical events and the purposes it has served in contemporary contexts.”

Sklar, Robert. “Listening to Those Who Wore the Pink Triangle: A Documentary Film Explores the Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals.” Forward 2000 sep 01: 11. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “‘Paragraph 175,’ also opening at the Castro Theater in San Francisco on September 15, relates the largely untold story of Nazi persecution of gay men and, to a lesser extent, lesbians. But the oppression the film recounts was not limited to the Nazi era, as filmmakers Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman make clear. In the postwar years, gay men who were victims of the Nazis were subject to re-arrest and imprisonment. Their applications for reparations were denied, and their time spent in concentration camps was deducted from their pensions. ‘As gay men and as Jews,’ Mr. Epstein and Mr. Friedman have stated, ‘we felt a particular urgency to record what stories we could while there were still living witnesses to tell them.’ In fact, they estimate that fewer than 10 gay survivors of the camps remain alive. Of the five men and one woman interviewed, three were older than 90 when the film was being made. Two of the six are also Jews.”

Snyder, David Raub, and Alan E. Steinweis. “The Prosecution and Punishment of Sex Offenders in the Wehrmacht, 1939–1945.” Thesis. The University of Nebraska – Lincoln. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses (2002): 393-93 P. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. Based on the German military’s perceived lessons of the First World War and its predictions about total war, the Wehrmacht designed the newly reconstituted military administration of justice to maintain a frictionless Wehrgemeinschaft and prevent a second “stab in the back.” Many Nazi fanatics undoubtedly entered the military judiciary, using the courts as a forum for their National Socialist views and attempting to implement the Führer’s will. Yet too many countervailing forces existed, primarily the institution of the Gerichtsherr , the military commander with supreme legal authority over the court attached to his unit, for fanatic jurists to dispense ideologically motivated “justice.” The Gerichtsherren dominated the military judicial system, harnessing the “law” to serve immediate military interests, which changed according to time, location, and the general war situation. The willingness of these commanders to sacrifice thousands of deserters, “subversives,” and other recalcitrant soldiers stands as one more indictment of the Wehrmacht. However, if the Wehrmacht executed unwilling soldiers at an ever-faster pace, it more and more quickly reintegrated rapists, child molesters, and, more often than not, homosexuals back into the regular troops. A brutal penal and parole system, which rechanneled the Wehrmacht’s usable human materiel back to the front and channeled those no longer willing to carry a weapon to concentration camps, assisted the military judiciary in maintaining the Wehrgemeinschaft .

Steakley, James. “Homosexuals and the Thrid Reich.” The Body Politic January/February 11 (1974). Fordham University. Web. 25 Mar. 2012. <http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/pwh/steakley-nazis.asp>. “The first account in English of the situation of homosexuals in Nazi Germany appeared originally in The Body Politic as part of a series by James Steakley on the development of an early German homosexual emancipation movement.”

Steakley, James. “Internet History Sourcebooks Project.” Internet History Sourcebooks Project. Fordham University. Web. 11 Jan. 2013. “Appallingly little imformation [sic] is available on the situation of homosexuals in Nazi Germany. Many historians have hinted darkly at the ‘unspeakable practices’ of a Nazi elite supposedly overrrun with ‘sexual perverts,’ but this charge is both unsubstantiated and insidious. Upon closer examination, it turns out to be no more than the standard use of anti-gay prejudice to defame any given individual or group — a practice, incidentally, of which the Nazis were the supreme masters. The Nazis were guilty of very real offences, but their unspeakable practices were crimes against mankind.”

Stone, Charles. “What If Hitler Was Gay?” The Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide 9.3 (May): 29. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. Things started coming to a head for Röhm as early as 1931, when complaints about his behavior were arising in the movement. In that year the head of the eastern division of the SA, Paul Schulz, had gotten so fed up with the situation that he drafted a sharply worded letter to [Adolf Hitler], a copy of which was leaked to the press and published under the title “The Brown House of the Homosexuals.” Among other things, Schulz wanted to warn Hitler of the danger of filling important positions with “morally objectionable persons.” Along with Röhm he mentioned such high-ranking SA officers as Paul Röhrbein, his lover Karl Ernst (called “Frau Röhrbein”), and Carl-Leon Graf Du Moulin Eckart. These close friends of the SA leader formed a “homosexual line” that stretched “from Munich to Berlin.” Schulz claimed that every rent-boy in Berlin knew (via Röhm) about the “fantastic relations” that Röhrbein had with Hitler. And then came the clincher: things had gotten so far out of hand that the news was being spread by Marxists that “you, highly esteemed Führer, are also homosexual.” On July 8 Otto Strasser, the “left-wing” National Socialist who had broken with Hitler in 1930 and whose brother Gregor was one of the victims of the purge, published an article in his exile newspaper Die Deutsche Revolution entitled “Does § 175 Apply Only to the Dead? A Question for Adolf Hitler.” Strasser finds the indignation of the national-socialist press over the “abnormal disposition” of the murdered SA leaders a case of “disgusting hypocrisy”: “Was it not precisely Herr Hitler and his Party,” he asks, “who again and again stood up for Röhm and his same-sexual friends?” Not only that, the Führer was doing the same thing with high-ranking Party officials who were still alive. A week later Strasser offered a list of such major Nazi dignitaries “…[to] accuse them before the German people and general public — in full knowledge of the judicial consequences — of a homosexual mentality and unnatural (widernatürlich) sexual activity.” The list included the following names: Rudolf “Fraulein” Heß (one of many campy nicknames); Baldur von Schirach, Reich Youth Leader (!); Helmut Brückner, Gauleiter of Silesia (later charged with violation of § 175); Karl Kaufmann, Gauleiter of Hamburg; and Wilhelm Brückner, Hitler’s personal adjutant. Of all the names on the list perhaps the most surprising is that of Heß. [Ian Kershaw] says he was “besotted with Hitler,” and there is evidence to suggest that they had a “romantic” relationship.

Timm, Annette F. “Sex with a Purpose: Prostitution: Venereal Disease, and Militarized Masculinity in the Third Reich.” Journal of the History of Sexuality 11.1/2 (Jan): 223-55. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “Timm explores how Nazi attitudes toward sexuality and masculinity were expressed in policies on prostitution and the control of venereal disease. The totalitarian impulse to make even the most private of human activities serve national goals meant that Nazi leaders sought not only to define acceptable sexual behavior but to redefine sexual acts as acts with public–not simply private–significance.”

Wilson, Nathan Andrew. “The Holocaust in Gay German and American Life.” Thesis. Dalhousie University (Canada). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses (2006): 106-06 P. Web. 22 Sept. 2013. “Beginning in the 1970s, German and American homosexuals began scrutinizing the past to learn more about gay history. Many found that Adolf Hitler’s Germany provided the worst example of anti-homosexual policies run amok. American homosexuals in particular were prone to view this history through the eyes of Nazism’s Jewish victims. By the mid-1980s, German homosexuals and historians also began employing and discussing this particular approach as an appropriate means to understand the past. This Master’s thesis examines the employment of the Holocaust by some German and American homosexuals as a means to construct a shared historical memory and asks why, despite new historical evidence disputing many central arguments of ‘gay Holocaust’ history, does a comparative framework remain the popular method of viewing the past?”