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France: The Dark Years, 1940-1944 (Anglais) Broché – 27 mars 2003

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

wide-ranging ... The story is regularly enriched by nuggets of unexpected information. (Patrick Marnham, Spectator, 7 July 2001)

a valuable addition to the continuing debate over France's collapse in 1940 and the Vichy government's subsequent cooperation with the Nazis (Contemporary Review)

this analysis reads very fresh, as though what happened might have turned out differently (The Guardian)

Présentation de l'éditeur

The French call them 'the Dark Years'... This definitive new history of Occupied France explores the myths and realities of four of the most divisive years in French history. Taking in ordinary people's experiences of defeat, collaboration, resistance, and liberation, it uncovers the conflicting memories of occupation which ensure that even today France continues to debate the legacy of the Vichy years.

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 688 pages
  • Editeur : OUP Oxford; Édition : New Ed (27 mars 2003)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0199254575
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199254576
  • Dimensions du produit: 22,9 x 4,1 x 15,5 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 111.759 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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Première phrase
In January 1945, the lifelong anti-Republican polemicist Charles Maurras was found guilty of collaboration with Germany. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Hugh Nicklin le 12 février 2012
Format: Broché
A weighty and important book. It is one of the misfortunes of France to have had its whole being picked over in detail by historians in this way. I was continually asking myself, what would a book on wartime Britain look like if the same spotlight could be focused on it? Having just finished a book on the History of the Lauragais (south east of Toulouse) I was impressed by the way that 'The Dark Years' captured in general the situation on the ground which I had looked at in detail.
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4 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Antoine Krieger le 30 septembre 2005
Format: Broché
Ce livre constitue dorénavant l'ouvrage de référence sur l'Occupation. Tout d'abord, l'auteur dresse un tableau quasi exhaustif du contexte de la France d'avant-guerre:
-américanisation(fordisme) d'un pays à forte tradition artisanale et agricole
-forte immigration(remise en question de l'identité française)
-avant garde(cubisme et surréalisme des années 1920) puis retour à l'ordre
-hantise de la montée du fascisme apres le 6 fevrier 1934 puis du communisme apres le Front populaire
Ensuite, losqu'il décrit l'Occupation, il prend en compte toutes les problemes de l'epoque(politique, sociaux, economiques, diplomatiques). Par exemple, il analyse a merveille les dissensions de l'extreme-droite(fascistes et nazis vont a Paris alors que les petainistes resterent a Vichy) que celles du gouvernement de Pétain(les vichystes furent, par exemple divisés entre partisans de la laicite et ceux du retour au religieux).
Cette exhaustivité et cette rigueur de l'analyse font de ce livre l'ouvrage de reference sur la periode.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 18 commentaires
76 internautes sur 80 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Not for the casual reader 19 mai 2004
Par S. MACPHERSON - Publié sur
Format: Broché
In other readings of World War II, I had always felt I did not have a solid grounding in the history of Vichy France. I have been greatly intrigued for some time as to how a country like France could have collaborated to such a degree. This gap in knowledge, I hoped, could be filled by a general treatise on the subject. Having reviewed several books on Vichy France I chose 'France- The Dark Years, 1940-1944' as the one work upon which I would rely.
While I did admire the scope of the work, and have no argument that this book may be called the latest definitive source, be warned that this book is not written for those who do not have a working knowledge on the subject. The author does not spend time on set-up: the reader is presumed to know of not only the leading political figures in France during the 1930's-40's, but also those of greater obscurity. The list goes on with the presumptions of the author- we are supposed to know about newspapers of the era (of which there were many), political parties, both major and insignificant, and the names of resistance groups.
Again, this would not be critical if I had the requisite knowledge of the politics and society of France during this era, of which I do know some. But this book is written for the doctoral level student of this era in history, not for those seeking a more general overview.
65 internautes sur 68 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
When Decency pierced the Darkness 6 avril 2002
Par - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Thirty years ago Robert Paxton publishes his classic book on Vichy France which demonstrated both the vigor the Petain/Laval regime sought collaboration as well as the political failure and moral horror of their policies. At the same time Paxton also demonstrated both the widespread support Petain could count on, at least at the beginning, as well as the fact that the regime was not consistently reactionary but also had modernizing elements which the Fourth and Fifth Republics would build upon. Now Julian Jackson has provided his account of the dark years. What has he done to modify Paxton's account?
Like Jackson's two previous books on 1930s France, The Dark Years is based largely on secondary literature and memoir literature. Notwithstanding that Jackson's account is unusually thorough. He starts off with a discussion of the interwar years, which looks over such ingredients of Vichy as pacifism, the German threat, Action Francaise, the shock of the first world war and the Depression. He then discusses the Vichy regime, then goes on to discuss popular opinion about the occupation. There is then a large section on the Resistance, followed by one on the Liberation and the postwar Remembrance of the Occupation.
Ever since Paxton's book appeared people have commented on how the French have been unwilling to confront the shame of Vichy. Jackson's response to this is a breath of fresh air: "The problem with such comments is not only the unwarranted condescension which underlies them--the assumption that `we', the British, would have faced up to things much better in similar circumstances--but also the fact that they are so patently false....Far from being years which French historians avoid, the Vichy period is probably at present the most intensively researched in French history..."
Jackson also points out that the historiography of Vichy was not subsumed in euphemistic darkness before Paxton came along. More important is the emphasis on a fact that Paxton did not sufficiently emphasize. The Germans were never popular under the occupation. The Germans' own reports on public opinion were consistently pessimistic. As one German professor noted in June 1941 "The French rejoice at the fact that British planes are attacking their cities..." The National Revolution under Vichy has some support, and there were powerful quasi-fascist movements in France before the war began, but its popularity too was limited. Petain, by contrast, was popular, at the beginning, though often this was because many people incorrectly believed he was a double game against the Germans (he was not). The fact that Petain did not have a reputation as a Monarchist led many people to believe he was more liberal than he actually was. The remarkable crowds which greated him a few months before liberation were, as Jackson points out, less an endorsement of him than an opportunity to show French flags after their banning under the occupation. At the same time plans for a more modern and planned economy, greater emphasis on physical education and contempt for the defeated Third Republic would continue into the post-war years. (Similarly, Jackson is also good at how the invaluable contribution made to the Resistance by immigrants to France was ignored and downplayed in the following years.)
Jackson is good at pointing out the nuances of the occupation. He properly emphasizes the wide support many ordinary French men and women gave to persecuted Jews that was crucial to their high survival rate. He also refutes the Vichyist argument that their "interference" accounted for the lower rate of Frenchmen involuntarily drafted to labour in Germany. To the extent this was true, it was because of widespread resistance to the considerable efforts Vichy made to enforce German wishes. Jackson is also good on specific individuals. Henry de Montherlant's reaction to the occupation looks much less pleasant in retrospect. By contrast Lucien Febvre's continued publication of Annales looks more principled than has been given credit for, while Paul Claudel's praise of Petain should not lead one to ignore the fact that he was pro-British and against collaboration from the very beginning. Jackson is also good on the resistance. While the Allies would have liberated France without them, they made it considerable easier and they would have done more if the Allies had given them more arms. Although the Resistance's relations with the populace were strained, "the peasantry's attitude toward the Maquis was one of solidarity tempered by prudence, respect tempered by apprehension. Whether one stresses the prudence or the solidarity, there is no dobut that the Maquis could not have survived without the peasantry." If it is true that the number of resisters increased dramatically at the time immediately before liberation, this was also the time when they faced the greatest physical danger. Perhaps the greatest virtue of Jackson's book is that it shows why glib sneers about French "cowardice" are no longer acceptable.
25 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Definitive World War II History on Nazi-Occupied France 21 décembre 2002
Par John Kwok - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Julian Jackson's history is the most distinguished account I've read on France during the period from 1940 through 1944. He makes an excellent case noting how the Vichy Regime was indeed part of a longstanding political tradition in France which went as far back as the Ancien Regime; he makes a similar observation of the Resistance, noting how its political philosophy could be traced directly back to the French Revolution. Jackson clearly notes the intense dislike - if not outright hatred - of many French towards their German occupiers, noting that such sentiments may have played a decisive part in ensuring the survival of more French Jews than their counterparts in other Nazi-occupied countries. Much to my surprise, he clearly demonstrates how support for the Vichy Regime came not only from a staunchly conservative elements - but also liberal, and indeed socialist elements - within French society. He also succeeds in noting how figures such as French resistance leader Jean Moulin and future French president Francois Mitterand underwent transformations - some major, but also minor - in their politics, eventually shifting their support from the Vichy regime to DeGaulle's Free French movement. Despite Vichy's reputation for cultural as well as political repression, Jackson shows that cultural activities ranging from the fine arts through film not only survived, but also flourished, at least during the early history of the Vichy Regime.
25 internautes sur 26 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
DARK FRANCE 4 septembre 2003
Par Charles I. Stubbart - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Although I knew something about de Gaulle, Vichy, "The Resistance," etc; usually these topics were tangential to some other main topic I was reading. Jackson's BIG book set me straight on everything I always wanted to know about Vichy, the Germans, and the Free French, Petain, de Gaulle, etc.
France 1940-1944 covers highly controversial "history."
Almost none of the various personalities and political parties survive Jackson's detailed analysis without taking their "lumps." France 1940-1944 presents an ambiguous, painful story about collaboration, indifference and a few resisters.
Surely the French will never escape the shame of Vichy
Jackson often delivers clever insights and mixed judgments. Jackson gives you enough background to evaluate some of the following puzzles:
·Why did Churchill recognize De Gaulle in 1940, instead of the Vichy Government?
·Why did FDR try so hard to get rid of "Le Grand Charles" (De Gaulle)?
·Why did many French literally cheer when France lost the War with Germany in June 1940?
·Why did powerful and influential French express such bitterness, invective, and hatred against Jews?
·Why did the "Resistance" accept De Gaulle in 1944? After all, thousands of French fought and died inside France while De Gaulle remained safely in England and Africa.
·Why didn't the Communists launch a takeover at the time of the Liberation?.
After you read this book you will understand some of the powerful destabilizing forces in French society. But Dark Years is a long book, it's serious reading, and it's written in
a rather academic style -- dull if you are not really intrigued by France, the French, De Gaulle, the Germans, the Jews, etc.
20 internautes sur 21 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Excellent But Aimed at Specialists 7 mars 2002
Par R. Albin - Publié sur
Format: Relié
This is a fine book on France during the Occupation period. Until approximately 25 years ago, this period of French history was largely uninvestigated. Starting with the pioneering work of the American historian Robert Paxton, there has been explosive growth in the literature related to the occupation period. Not surprisingly, much of this literature has involved controversial topics such as the culpability of the Vichy regime in the Holocaust, the importance of the Resistance movements, the role of Communists in the resistance, and the exact role of DeGaulle and his supporters. Prof. Jackson does a fine job of summarizing and analyzing this extensive literature. He provides a nuanced analysis of the Vichy regime, presents the Resistance in a clear and evenhanded manner, and is quite enlightening on DeGaulle's role and behavior during the war. This book was undoubtedly difficult to write. In addition to the large literature on this subject, France during this period was divided into several units, each of which experienced the Occupation in rather different ways. The basic distinction was between the Occupied and Vichy controlled zones but Occupied France was further subdivided into portions controlled as part of the administration of Belgium (the far Northwest), as part of Germany itself (Alsace-Lorraine), and the remainder of occupied France. Add to this complex mixture the need to describe the complex history of the Gaullist Free French outside France.
The heart of Jackson's book is the analysis of Vichy and its counterpart, the Resistance. As shown well, Vichy defies simple characterization. It was possible, for example, to be pro-Vichy and anti-German, at least at the beginning of the regime. Vichy benefited from the general disgust with the politics of the Third Republic and was seen by many as a potential vehicle for renewal of the French nation. Vichy leaders deluded themselves that an accomodationist policy would result in benefits, such as a peace treaty and end of the Occupation. As the war progressed, the Vichy regime would become increasingly collaborationist and the Vichy government participated willingly in German efforts to deport Jews to the concentration camps and in efforts to by German economic planners to acquire coerced French labor. Jackson also does a very nice job of revealing the tangled origins and history of the Resistance and its complex relationship with the Gaullist movement.
Jackson is a competent though not outstanding writer. Because of the complex nature of the subject, a strictly chronological approach is not possible and there is some cutting back and forth among chapters. Numerous individuals and organizations are discussed, the latter often represented by acronyms. This book requires some concentration to keep track of all these people and organizations. If future editions are published, a good addition would be a couple of tables listing organizations, acronyms, and important individuals.
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