Do French ‘Nomads’ Have a War History? A Review of Seventy-five Years of Historiography

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Published Oct 25, 2022
Lise Foisneau

Abstract

Through a study of the historiography of the persecution of “Nomads” in France from 1939 to 1946, this article offers a critical analysis of methodological and thematic biases present in much historical research on the topic. Historical studies on “Nomads” have significant practical implications today: this article examines how the history of French Roma and Travellers during the Second World War was written. It shows how French institutions have relied on historical work to deny the racial character of the persecution of the so-called“Nomads”. The paper emphasizes that internment and enforced residence were not so much an absolute break but rather part of a particularly virulent moment in the long history of persecution of “Nomads” in the twentieth century in France.

How to Cite

Foisneau, L. (2022). Do French ‘Nomads’ Have a War History? A Review of Seventy-five Years of Historiography. Critical Romani Studies, 4(2), 34–54. https://doi.org/10.29098/crs.v4i2.54
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Keywords

Genocide, Resistance, France, Historiography, Internment, Nomad, Roma

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