Les Parisiennes : how the women of Paris lived, loved, and died under Nazi occupation / Anne Sebba.Material type: BookPublisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 2016Edition: First U.S. edition.Description: xxii, 457 pages, 24 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (some color) ; 25 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9781250048592; 1250048591.Subject(s): Women -- France -- Paris -- History -- 20th century | Women -- France -- Paris -- Biography | Paris (France) -- History -- 1940-1944 | France -- History -- German occupation, 1940-1945 | Paris (France) -- Biography | Paris (France) -- Social conditions -- 20th century | Paris (France) -- Politics and government -- 20th century | World War, 1939-1945 -- Social aspects -- France -- Paris | World War, 1939-1945 -- Influence | HISTORY -- Europe -- France | BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY -- Cultural Heritage | German Occupation of France (1940-1945) | World War (1939-1945) | Influence (Literary, artistic, etc.) | Politics and government | Social aspects | Social conditions | Women | France | France -- Paris | 1900-1999Genre/Form: Biographies. | Biographies. | Biography. | History.DDC classification: 305.40944/361 Other classification: HIS013000 | BIO002000
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"First published in Great Britain by Weidenfeld & Nicolson"--Title page verso.
Includes bibliographical references (pages -422) and index.
Les Parisiennes -- War. 1939 : Paris on the edge ; 1940 : Paris abandoned ; 1941 : Paris divided ; 1942 : Paris ravaged ; 1943: Paris trembles ; 1944 (January-June) : Paris awaits -- Liberation. 1944 (June-December) : Paris shorn ; 1945 : Paris returns ; 1946 : Paris adjusts -- Reconstruction. 1947 : Paris looks newish ; 1948-1949 : Paris Americanized -- Peacetime Paris.
"What did it feel like to be a woman living in Paris from 1939 to 1949? These were years of fear, power, aggression, courage, deprivation and secrets until-- finally-- renewal and retribution. Even at the darkest moments of Occupation, with the Swastika flying from the Eiffel Tower and pet dogs abandoned howling on the streets, glamour was ever present. French women wore lipstick. Why? It was women more than men who came face to face with the German conquerors on a daily basis-- perhaps selling them their clothes or travelling alongside them on the Metro, where a German soldier had priority over seats. By looking at a wide range of individuals from collaborators to resisters, actresses and prostitutes to teachers and writers, Anne Sebba shows that women made life-and-death decisions every day, and often did whatever they needed to survive. Her fascinating cast of characters includes both native Parisian women and those living in Paris temporarily-- American women and Nazi wives, spies, mothers, mistresses, and fashion and jewellery designers. Some women, like the heiress B�eatrice de Camondo or novelist Ir�ene N�emirovsky, converted to Catholicism; others like lesbian racing driver Violette Morris embraced the Nazi philosophy; only a handful, like Coco Chanel, retreated to the Ritz with a German lover. A young medical student, Anne Spoerry, gave lethal injections to camp inmates one minute but was also known to have saved the lives of Jews. But this is not just a book about wartime. In enthralling detail Sebba explores the aftershock of the Second World War and the choices demanded. How did the women who survived to see the Liberation of Paris come to terms with their actions and those of others? Although politics lies at its heart, Les Parisiennes is a fascinating account of the lives of people of the city and, specifically, in this most feminine of cities, its women and young girls"--Publisher's website.
"Paris in the 1940s was a place of fear, power, aggression, courage, deprivation, and secrets. During the occupation, the swastika flew from the Eiffel Tower and danger lurked on every corner. While Parisian men were either fighting at the front or captured and forced to work in German factories, the women of Paris were left behind where they would come face to face with the German conquerors on a daily basis, as waitresses, shop assistants, or wives and mothers, increasingly desperate to find food to feed their families as hunger became part of everyday life. When the Nazis and the puppet Vichy regime began rounding up Jews to ship east to concentration camps, the full horror of the war was brought home and the choice between collaboration and resistance became unavoidable. Sebba focuses on the role of women, many of whom faced life-and-death decisions every day. After the war ended, there would be a fierce settling of accounts between those who made peace with or, worse, helped the occupiers and those who fought the Nazis in any way they could."--Dust jacket.