In this concise, clearly written book, Thomas and Michael Christofferson provide a balanced introduction to every aspect of the French experience during World War II.
Synthesizing a wide range of scholarship, the authors integrate political, diplomatic, military, social, cultural, and economic history in this portrait of a nation and a people at war. Here is a chronicle of the battles and campaigns that stained French soil with blood. Here, also, is the full historical context of the war—its origins, realities, and aftermath—in French society. The authors pay particular attention to the key failures of institutional France—especially the officer corps, political elites, and the Catholic Church. They also assess the controversial history of the Vichy regime and the German occupation, in carefully crafted accounts of resistance and collaboration, Vichy’s National Revolution, and the fate of France’s Jews.
Accessible to both students and general readers, France during World War II develops a full understanding of the actors, events, issues, and controversies of a turbulent era.