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Représentations et réception des films sur la Seconde Guerre mondiale en France à la Libération (1944-1950) : la concurrence des victimes

Abstract : In the immediate aftermath of the French liberation, theaters across the country began to project movies centered around the recent conflict. Between 1944 and 1950, World War II was the central theme of more than 302 films. However, these films came from different countries; they were not produced at the exact same time; they did not depict the conflict through the same angle; and more importantly, they did not cover the same class of war victims. Wide differences exist between a French chronicle of the Occupation and a U.S. war movie, a depiction of the homecoming of Italian prisoners and the story of soviet resistance or a narration of British citizens’ everyday life during the war. At the time, the response of the French audience and critics to these diverse movie releases varied greatly too. By studying these movies and their reception at the time of their releases, the present study informs our understanding of the emergence of the French mythology surrounding this major conflict. In three chapters, I analyze the cinematographic depictions of various groups of war victims in movies of this era, as well as the audience and critics’ response at the time. In the first chapter, I describe the theoretical underpinnings of the cinema history, as well as the narration of World War II as presented by these movies, using statistics specifically collected for this study. The two following chapters offer a series of representative case studies. I first focus on different groups of victims actively involved in the conflict: militaries on and off the front-lines, members of the resistance, and spies and assimilated individuals. I then study the non-fighting victims: civilians under the occupation, civilians living in the free zone, homecoming prisoners, members of the Jewish community and other victims of antisemitism, and finally, the children.
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Submitted on : Friday, November 29, 2019 - 5:44:16 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, December 1, 2020 - 3:37:20 AM


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  • HAL Id : tel-02387450, version 1


Arnaud Cassam-Chenaï. Représentations et réception des films sur la Seconde Guerre mondiale en France à la Libération (1944-1950) : la concurrence des victimes. Art et histoire de l'art. Université Michel de Montaigne - Bordeaux III, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019BOR30023⟩. ⟨tel-02387450⟩



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