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Keywords

First World War, Prisoners, Franco-German relations, Regret

Abstract

This article examines Jacques Rivière’s post-war work L’Allemand: Souvenirs et réflexions d'un prisonnier de guerre (1918) ‘On German nature: memories and reflections of a prisoner-of-war,’ as a response to the conflicting nexus of Catholicism and French nationalism in the aftermath of the First World War. A damning account of the German race, L’Allemand exposes Rivière’s tussle with his wartime and post-war identities, most strikingly exhibited in his moral distancing from the text he was to eventually publish. In resuscitating Riviere’s now forgotten text, this article engages with the post-war reception of a work whose peculiar context bears witness to the liminal status of those detained in First World War prison camps caught between trench and captor nation, enmity and empathy.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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