“We bury our heads in the sand and pretend we’ve moved on.”
― Pascal Bresson, For Justice: The Serge & Beate Klarsfeld Story
Serge and Beate Klarsfeld are people whose lives have had a major impact in the world for more than five decades. In For Justice: The Serge & Beate Klarsfeld Story by Pascal Bresson and illustrated by Sylvan Dorange, readers learn more about Serge & Beate Klarsfeld, famed husband and wife team of Nazi hunters who spent over five decades seeking justice. Serge and Beate frequently say that they traded their lives for justice, demanding acknowledgment and retribution for the victims and survivors of the Holocaust.
Before they started their lives’ work though, circumstances had to allow them to meet. Beate Kunkel was working as an au pair in Paris, while Serge Klarsfled was a political science university student. The two met by chance at a Paris Metro Station in 1960. Over coffee and conversation, Serge shared his family’s history: His father was taken by the German Police in 1943 while Serge, his mother, and sister hid behind a partition in a closet. Beate, a Lutheran German, had a vastly different past: she grew up in an ares where no one ever talked about the Third Reich or what they did. They spent their lives pretending to have move on. Serge and Beate then married and started their tireless campaign to restore the truth the world and the people affected by the Holocaust.
Starting in the late 1960s, Beate and Serge began their crusade to unmask Nazi criminals, several that were convicted in absentia. Some of these criminals were living comfortable lives, some in plain sight, while others lived in foreign countries under new identities. The two were hunting the criminals whose signatures who found on the deportation convoys. Their mission affected their lives, resulting in them living in danger with very limited finances. However, the two are committed to get answers, even though the wheels of justice turn ever so slowly.
This graphic novel was written in partnership with Serge and Beate Klarsfeld.