Claire Gorrara
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Introduction
Mapping French memories of the Second World War
in French crime fiction and the Second World War
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This introduction sets out the conceptual, historical and literary-critical foundations on which this book is built. It begins by exploring some of the conceptual approaches to the study of collective memory. It focuses in particular on cultural memory and the influential role of fictional texts. It then examines the fraught historical legacies of the Second World War and evaluates Henry Rousso's pioneering model of the evolutions in French memories of the Second World War, the ‘Vichy syndrome’. Lastly, the introduction examines critical approaches to the study of popular culture. It investigates the narrative template of crime fiction and identifies the specific contribution crime fiction can make to our understanding of the wartime past.

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French crime fiction and the Second World War

Past crimes, present memories

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