Atrocities on Trial: Historical Perspectives on the Politics of Prosecuting War Crimes

By Patricia Heberer; Jürgen Matthäus | Go to book overview

Crimes-against-Humanity Trials in France
and Their Historical and Legal Contexts
A Retrospective Look

RICHARD J. GOLSAN

In the autumn of 1994, at the height of the controversy generated by revelations concerning the nature and duration of President François Mitterrand's service to the Vichy regime, the distinguished American historian Robert Paxton wryly observed that the Vichy past appeared to interest the French more than money or sex.1 While Paxton's tongue-in-cheek remark might well have been an exaggeration, there is no doubt that from the early 1970s through the 1990s and even up to the present, many in France have been preoccupied with, if not obsessed by, the period of the nation's recent past commonly referred to as les années noires, or the “Dark Years” of the German Occupation during World War II. As the debates, scandals, and controversies associated with what Henry Rousso has aptly labeled the “Vichy Syndrome” reveal, the memory of official (and unofficial) French collaboration with the Nazi Occupier remains troubling, controversial, and occasionally even explosive. That memory has frequently left its mark not only on politics, political leaders, and governments, but also on the nation's legal and judicial system, as well as its cultural practices. Such is the unsettling and haunting power of the memory of the Vichy period, and at least the perception of the uniqueness of the historical moment itself, that the historian Gérard Noiriel has noted that for many its impact on French history is comparable to the French Revolution itself.2


The “Vichy Syndrome”

As Rousso points out in his classic study The Vichy Syndrome, as well as in subsequent works, the troubled memory of the period has undergone a number of transformations during the long postwar period. Immediately following the Liberation and up through the early 1950s, the nation experienced what Rousso describes as a period of “unfinished mourning,” during which time it attempted to come to terms with the immediate impact of the regime itself,

-247-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Atrocities on Trial: Historical Perspectives on the Politics of Prosecuting War Crimes
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 327

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.