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New film about the life of Ben Telders (1903-1945)

Shortly before Remembrance Day, a new film was launched about the life and legacy of Ben Telders. Telders was professor of Dutch Law at Leiden University at the start of the Second World War; he was imprisoned in a concentration camp on account of of his protest against the Nazis.

In April, it was exactly 75 years ago that Telders passed away in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. He succumbed to typhus fever just a few days before the liberation. Members of the Telders Foundation and Leiden's Dutch History debating society were planning to pay tribute to him this year with a symposium, but unfortunately, due to the coronavirus, this was not possible. 

Instead, the organisers have produced a splendid film about the life and legacy of this professor who played an important role in 1940 in the Leiden protest against the persecution of the Jews, and who was to pay for his actions with his life. 'The aim of the film is to shine a light on the person of Professor Telders and his place in Leiden University 75 years after his death,' explained Ida van Veldhuizen, a member of the debating society. 'We also want to set an example for current generations to make them more aware of the concepts of civic courage and freedom. You can see this clearly in the film, where we hold discussions with secondary school pupils.'

The film “Aan ons de vrijheid” (Freedom is ours) was produed by Leiden  filmmaker Marit Geluk, and can be viewed in its entirety below. 

“Aan ons de vrijheid”

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