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Bronzes to BulletsVichy and the Destruction of French Public Statuary, 1941–1944$
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Kirrily Freeman

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804758895

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804758895.001.0001

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“The ‘Saint-Bartholomew’ of Statues”? The Bronze Mobilization Campaign in French Memory and Historiography

(p.171) 6 Conclusion
Bronzes to Bullets
Stanford University Press

This concluding chapter examines how the episode of the destruction of bronze statues has been written in French memory and historiography, highlighting two of the central myths of the Vichy Syndrome. The “resistancialist myth,” which dominated scholarship on Vichy until the 1970s, “regarded all the impetus as coming from victorious Germany, in a way that made Vichy French responses to defeat and occupation appear misleadingly passive—whether as culpable defeatism…or as prudent caution.” The countermyth of a France of cowards and collaborators, on the other hand, paints the bronze mobilization campaign as revisionist iconoclasm: Vichy ideologues attempted to rewrite the French past through a revision of the events and figures that were commemorated throughout the country, and the administration acquiesced.

Keywords:   Vichy Syndrome, France, Germany, bronze statuary, resistancialist myth, revisionist iconoclasm

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