Memory and the Second World War in France

Please note this seminar will be conducted in French. This seminar focuses on how the Second World War has been remembered in France from the postwar period until today. Participants will explore how representations of the Shoah, the understanding of the Resistance, and the process of coming to terms with Vichy collaboration have changed over time. We will analyze memorials and the role of testimony, as well as the complex nature of memory and forgetting. Looking at these topics from historical and cultural points of view, participants will read texts by Henry Rousso and Annette Wieviorka and will analyze sites of memory. In addition, we will study excerpts of literary texts, including a memoir by Charlotte Delbo, Patrick Modiano’s search for elusive memory of the war, and Hélène Cixous’s memories of Algeria under the Occupation. This seminar will offer participants a chance to study key moments of memory of the Occupation and the legacy of the war in France.