Academic journal article Journalism History

Sparks of Resistance: The Illegal Press in German-Occupied Denmark, April 1940-August 1943

Academic journal article Journalism History

Sparks of Resistance: The Illegal Press in German-Occupied Denmark, April 1940-August 1943

Article excerpt

Hong, Nathaniel. Sparks of Resistance: The Illegal Press in German-Occupied Denmark, April 1940-August 1943. Odense, Denmark: Odense University Press, 1996. 308 pp. 300 Danish kroner (about $46.)

The value of this volume lies in the fact that it is about a significant World War II subject on which there are few books in English. It complements, therefore, the growing body of studies on homefronts during the war. Collections with strengths in the history of the twentieth-century world wars, international journalism history or the underground press in general should include this work. It is based on a wide variety of primary and secondary sources, and the author deserves considerable credit for his exhaustive exploitation of the former. His thorough research and mastery of subject lends authority to the book, which historians will welcome for its well documented factual content.

Sparks of Resistance provides a month-by-month account of the formation, expansion, and content of the illegal Danish press during the German occupation until August 1943. It explores the various types of publications used by the illegal press and contains an interesting discussion of various non-periodical devices (such as leaflets, posters and chain letters) employed by the early practitioners of illegal publicity during the war years. It covers not only the methods of newsgathering , production, distribution, and other operational concerns of the illegal press but also those of the "borderline legal oppositional press" that existed during the first year of the occupation.

Beyond tracing the widening departure of the illegal press from the views and actions of Denmark's accommodationist government, the study examines several engaging subjects such as the creation of "symbols to hate. …

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