Testimony from the Nazi Camps: French Women's Voices by Margaret Anne Hutton

By Margaret Anne Hutton

This interdisciplinary research intergrates historiographical, literary and cultural methodologies in its specialize in a bit recognized corpus of testimonial bills released via French ladies deported to Nazi camps. Comprising epistemological and literary analyses of the money owed and an exam of the development of deportee identities, it is going to curiosity these operating within the fields of contemporary French literature, style, women's stories and the Holocaust.

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Wieviorka 1998:166) Witness accounts, riddled with factual errors, can tell us only of the era in which they were produced. : 167–8). Textual identities I 17 Where Wieviorka wishes to protect at all costs the ‘truth’ about the past, Rousso and Todorov, while recognising the dangers of an anachronistic (present-centred) construction of the past, introduce an important emphasis on ethics and on a futureoriented stance. Rousso’s and Conan’s text closes with the following statement: Destroying the taboos that existed was thus necessary and beneficial… But what about now?

Given that many deportees actually wrote of their experiences immediately upon their liberation from the camps (see below), it seems likely that a significant number of accounts may simply not have made it into print until the socio-political climate, and the market conditions, proved more favourable to publication. : 337–68). 18 The high-profile indictment of Vichy bureaucrats (Leguay, Bousquet, Touvier, Papon) in the following years kept Jewish memory to the fore. The trial of Klaus Barbie in 1987 not only kept the genocide firmly in the public consciousness, it also marked, as Rousso notes, a turning-point with respect to perceptions of the Resistance (1990:245).

A vast body of cross-referenced material is available: who was where when (both deportees and SS personnel); the specific conditions which prevailed in a specific lesser-known camp; events both small and great. Testimony from the nazi camps 22 One example of cross-referenced accounts of events, and the conclusions that can be drawn from it, may serve to conclude this section. Deportee Mala Zimetbaum’s escape from Auschwitz-Birkenau and her subsequent recapture is widely cross-referenced in the accounts, and a bedrock of corroborated fact can be differentiated from variations in emphasis and detail.

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