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France, 1914-1945 - 20 credits (HST889)

This course begins by examining the impact of the Great War upon French society, economy and culture. In particular, it investigates the relationship between the so-called ‘brutalisation’ of warfare, the preponderance of pacifism in the interwar years, and the rise of the extreme right. The course looks at the alleged undermining of republican culture by economic difficulties, political conflicts and the rise of Nazism. The course will include discussion of the supposed ‘blurring’ of gender identities consequent upon the Great War, and the reaction against it, and the rise of communism and the right-wing response to it. The course will conclude with examination of the antifascist movement of the 1930s, the fall of France and the Vichy regime.