Evaluating bombing
A conclusion
in French children under the Allied bombs, 1940–45
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Oral history has illuminated shared memories of bombing, within and across locations and age ranges. Whatever elements memories share, however, they remain heterogeneous. That bombing made an impact on the interviewees' lives is clear from their stories; but without a place in commonly told versions of the war in France, many do not remember it that way. This conclusion looks explicitly at the impact of bombing on individual lives, at its impact beyond individual lives on France, on our understanding of the history of Vichy and finally at bombing in memory. Children had a varied relationship with knowledge emanating from the adult world. The Allied bombing of France is interesting precisely because it has an odd place in memories of the Occupation. Trauma needs a listener, and the impact of war on these French children deserves to be heard.


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