The Florida Holocaust Museum invites the community to attend a special showing of the film Paragraph 175 followed by a panel discussion, featuring St. Pete/Clearwater Film Commissioner Tony Armer, Department Head of Film at Ringling College of Art and Design Bradley Battersby, Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Tampa Dr. Christopher Boulton, and President of the Gasparilla International Film Festival Rachel Feinman.
Paragraph 175 is a documentary film released in 2000, directed by the Academy Award-winning producing/directing team Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, and narrated by Rupert Everett. Between 1933 and 1945, 100,000 men were arrested for homosexuality under Paragraph 175, the sodomy provision of the German penal code dating back to 1871. Some were imprisoned, others were sent to concentration camps. Of the latter, only about 4,000 survived.
This epic story is told through personal accounts of men and women who lived through it: the Jewish gay resistance fighter who posed as a Hitler youth member to rescue his lover from a Gestapo transfer camp; the Jewish lesbian who escaped to England with the help of an older woman she had a crush on; the photographer and loyal German citizen who was arrested and imprisoned for homosexuality, then joined the army on his release because he "wanted to be with men."
Paragraph 175 has received numerous awards, including Best Documentary Jury Prize for Direction at Sundance 2000 and the Teddy Award for Best Documentary at the 2000 Berlin Film Festival.
The screening of Paragraph 175 is presented in conjunction with the traveling exhibition Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945, on loan from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and on display at The Florida Holocaust Museum through July 2nd. Presented locally by Wells Fargo, this exhibition examines the Nazi regime's attempt to eradicate homosexuality, which left thousands dead and shattered the lives of many more.
The screening of Paragraph 175 and panel discussion is free and open to the public and will take place on Wednesday, June 21st at 6:30 p.m. at The Florida Holocaust Museum. Please RSVP by calling 727.820.0100, extension 301.