Berlin Museum Opens Exhibit Looking Back At 150 Years of Gay History

By Stephen Fuchs on

As LGBT Pride Month wraps up at the end of June, Berlin’s German Historical Museum is opening up an exhibit that presents a comprehensive look at 150 years of the history and culture of homosexuality.

HOMOSEXUALITY_IES-2The exhibit, “homosexuality_ies“, has been four years in the making as a project between the German Historical Museum and the Schwules Museum*, Berlin’s LGBT-focused museum.

Germany has a very deep LGBT history that has seen drastic ups and downs, with some issues still being hotly debated in the country’s government today. This exhibit sheds light on those moments and is intended to “create awareness for the diversity of sexual lifestyles and concepts of gender, and to awaken both tolerance and understanding.”

Rare photos, documents and artifacts will be on display, ranging from the oldest written record of the terms “heterosexual” and “homosexual”, to electric shock devices used for “aversion therapy in the 1950’s.

A special section of the exhibit focuses on the estimated 50,000 homosexuals convicted as criminals under Nazi Germany rule, including the 10,000 to 15,000 sent to concentration camps along with the Jews. Titled “In the Pink Triangle”, this part of the exhibit offers a detailed look into the stories of many of these gay men and women persecuted by the Nazis.

Not all of “homosexuality_ies” focuses on the past though. Today’s efforts to bring total equality to same-sex couples in Germany and around the world will also be highlighted.

“Homosexuality_ies” opens to the public this Friday, June 26 and runs through December 1, 2015.

SOURCE German Historical Museum, AP

PHOTO CREDIT Rüdiger Trautsch © Schwules Museum*