Subject Guides

French Literature of World War II: A Project Depicting the Impact of WWII on Life in France

This page links out to SUNY Create

French civilians flee advancing German forces in June 1940. Photograph: LAPI/Roger-Viollet

Project Description

Link to project's SUNY Create  page here.

This library resource is centered on French literature concerning World War II and the themes of wartime resistance, collaboration, and patriotism and the impact the war had on daily life in France. The body of fiction and non-fiction surrounding France and WWII is considerable and still growing. France’s wartime literature reflects acts of suffering, resilience, shame, bravery and cowardice, love of country, healing and recovery, selflessness, anti-Semitism.  Whether written as the events occurred or in the years following, though, these tales can be viewed through different lenses. Early novels captured the hardship of daily life under German occupation. As the immediate dangers passed, a revisionist depiction of wartime events emerged with a romanticized perception of patriotic and heroic events. Some later writings reflect guilt for collaboration and inaction as atrocities were committed.  All in all, the aftermath of WWII continues to hang heavy over today’s politics and literature. This guide includes annotated bibliographies, links to globally available websites, descriptions of museums, historical and cultural sites, and libraries throughout the world. 

Curated Readings- Wartime and Post War (Click on Headings)

Places to Visit- In Person and Virtually

Museums and Sites of Memory

Le musée de la Libération de Paris – musée du général Leclerc – musée Jean Moulin

Des femmes faisant la queue devant une épicerie afin d'acheter des denrées alimentaires pendant le rationnement, années 1940 • AURIMAGE

Subject Librarian

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Caryl Ward
Bartle Library LSG-684E
French, Spanish and Italian
Subjects: French, Italian, Spanish