By Sarah Farmer
Between German crimes of the second one global battle, the Nazi bloodbath of 642 males, ladies, and youngsters at Oradour-sur-Glane on June 10, 1944, is one in every of the main infamous. On that Saturday afternoon, 4 days after the Allied landings in Normandy, SS troops encircled town within the rolling farm kingdom of the Limousin. infantrymen marched the lads to within reach barns, covered them up, and shot them. They then locked the ladies and youngsters within the church, shot them, and set the construction and the remainder of the city on fireplace. citizens who had been away for the day lower back to a blackened scene of horror, carnage, and devastation. In 1946 the French country expropriated and preserved the total ruins of Oradour. The 40 acres of crumbling homes, farms and outlets turned France's village martyr, manage as a monument to French discomfort less than the German career. this present day, the village is a vacationer vacation spot, entire with maps and guidebooks. during this first full-scale learn of the destruction of Oradour and its remembrance over the part century because the battle, Sarah Farmer investigates the prominence of the bloodbath in French knowing of the nationwide event below German domination. via interviews with survivors and village officers, as good as huge archival study, she items jointly a desirable background of either a shattering occasion and its memorial afterlife. Complemented via haunting pictures of the positioning, Farmer's eloquent dissection of France's nationwide reminiscence addresses the non-public and personal methods in which, via remembrance, humans attempt to come to phrases with huge, immense loss. Martyred Village could have implications for the learn of the historical past and sociology of reminiscence, stories approximately remembrances of warfare and the Holocaust, and postmodern issues with the presentation of the previous.
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Extra resources for Martyred Village: Commemorating the 1944 Massacre at Oradour-sur-Glane
Henri Amouroux reports a similar reaction for another area of active maquis resistance: the plateau of the Vercors, east of Grenoble. A note written by someone in the Resistance after the German attack on the Vercors in July 1944 indicated that "public sentiment . . " The author complained that the maquis "go after the Boches, kill some, and then take off. And when the Gestapo came . . they were able to operate in complete tranquility. " 49 There is insufficient evidence on which to judge the results of the German policy.
Throughout the war the Resistance press, seeking to rally people to its cause, reported assassinations, executions, and hangings of resisters. In the summer and fall of 1944, the Resistance papers all recorded the same cluster of incidentsmost of which had occurred before the massacre at Oradour in June 1944. In newspaper accounts and in pamphlets published in 1944 and 1945, these events were often listed and discussed together. Just a few days before the Liberation of Paris, Ce Soir printed a front page article entitled "Frenchmen, never forget: Ascq/Châteaubriant/Oradour-sur-Glane": For four years we have all lived in horror, we have all been used to hearing in low voices in our families, among friends, < previous page page_37 next page > If you like this book, buy it!
3 Greater social contrasts existed within the bourg than in the countryside. In town there were a few bourgeois families that, over generations, had accumulated power and material security. The Desourteaux family, for example, had family members in the professions and commerce. Dr. Paul Desourteaux ran a medical < previous page page_14 next page > If you like this book, buy it! 32] page_15 < previous page page_15 next page > Page 15 Figure 1 Postcard views of Oradour-sur-Glane between the wars.