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Women In The French Resistance: Revisiting the Historical Record

Abstract : If the Resistance as a whole is part of French identity, the different types of resistance, among them that of women, do not benefit from the same status. On the contrary, official commemorations of the Resistance are based upon two implicit statements: that the Resistance and the nation are somewhat equivalent - the Resistance being viewed as the uprising of the whole nation - and that to differentiate among the resisters would go against the very principles of the Resistance, its universalism, its refusal to make any distinction in race or origin. The assimilationism that is part of the ideology of the French Republic hinders the recognition of particularisms, whether regional, cultural or gendered. The Resistance has two national heroes, General de Gaulle since 1940, and Jean Moulin since 1964, both male and French. But no group has yet demanded the implementation of an affirmative action policy for the process of heroization. The French fear of multiculturalism -or any recognition of particularisms - could be sufficient to explain the slow development of women's studies in France, and indeed, the history of women resisters has not yet been studied as much as that of the Resistance as a whole. There were other factors that prevented it from developing. After reviewing the available bibliography, I propose some new directions of research which - as elementary and unsophisticated as they are - may break down some stereotypes and allow us to glimpse some aspects of the Resistance that traditional history has neglected. [Premières lignes de l'article]
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Claire Andrieu. Women In The French Resistance: Revisiting the Historical Record. French Politics, Culture & Society, Berghahn, 2000, 18 (1), pp.13 - 27. ⟨10.3167/153763700782378238⟩. ⟨hal-03618407⟩

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