- Paperback: 400 pages
- Publisher: Harvard University Press; 49672nd edition (March 15, 1994)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 067493539X
- ISBN-13: 978-0674935396
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #858,459 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Vichy Syndrome: History and Memory in France since 1944 49672nd Edition
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Rousso has set out to provide not just another narrative of les années noires--the years of defeat, occupation, of the phantom 'French State' and the civil war--but a study of the way the Vichy episode has been perceived and perverted by the French ever since. The result is a brilliant and intemperate book that is also a tract for the times. (The Economist)
Succeeds as a practical demonstration, for a particularly vivid case, of how to study a people grappling with a past. It is remarkable how few similar works there are...One understands a historian's hesitation before the poorly documented and ill-defined wider popular memory as a subject. Rousso shows us, however, how dramatic and revealing this genre can be. (Robert O. Paxton New York Review of Books)
This is an original and thought-provoking work, a 'must' for anyone interested in the political and cultural psychology of post-war France. (Nelly Wilson Jewish Quarterly)
About the Author
Henry Rousso is researcher at the Institut d'Histoire du Temps Présent (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique), Paris.
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"The Vichy Syndrome" is not a social history that either takes us into the homes and workplaces of families as they navigated the turbulent waters of the 1940s or gives us a sense of how the war and its aftermath affected varying strata of society. Instead, it is an intellectual history focused on those political institutions, media outlets, and individuals that shaped memories of the war years as well as an assessment of the French audience toward which this crafting of memory was directed.
Rousso's study provides a bounty of concrete information and inspires us to think more critically about the nature of memory, but it is not an easy read. This reflects the painful terrain covered and the inherently abstract nature of intellectual analysis. Then too there is the extraordinary complexity of wartime and postwar French political life with which the book's original French reading audience would have been more familiar than I. Most of all, however, there is the breathtaking scope of the subject matter covered. This means that Rousso has moved rapidly from one sub-topic to another, and many readers will likely want to team the book with others among the excellent assessments published regarding the Vichy period.