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Constructions of the Algerian War Appelés in French cultural memory

Mossman, Iain J. 2013. Constructions of the Algerian War Appelés in French cultural memory. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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The Algerian War (1954-62) has been recognised by historians, sociologists and cultural theorists as one of the most divisive episodes in recent French history. Yet the historiography of the conflict is marked by periods when the war was broadly absent from the national memorial sphere, contrasting against others where violent memories of the conflict have coalesced around issues such as immigration, torture, and historical education. This thesis articulates how these and other social frameworks have influenced the cultural memory of the 1.2 million French military service conscripts, or appelés, who served during the Algerian War. Taking a quantitative and qualitative approach, informed by a Halbwachsian model of collective memory formation, and interdisciplinary readings on the social frameworks of Algerian War memory in France, this thesis thus outlines a historiography of constructions of the appelés in French cultural memory, which pays due attention to the medium in which that memory is constructed. Beginning with an overview of a wide corpus of appelé cultural memories from five media, through dialogue with historical, cultural and sociological literature about the conscripts and models of Algerian War memory, the thesis develops an appelé specific phasing of cultural memory. The thesis then advances four case studies which each examine constructions of the appelés in a distinct medium, and situates them within the appropriate phase in the evolution of appelé cultural memory. These studies consider the construction of the appelés in: firstly, television news magazine Cinq colonnes à la une (1959-60); secondly, two prose texts, Philippe Labro’s Des Feux Mals Éteints (1967) and Noël Favrelière’s Le Déserteur (1973); thirdly, Marc Garanger’s photo album La Guerre d’Algérie vue par un appelé du contingent (1984); and finally, three sets of texts drawn from contemporary online digital media.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Modern Languages
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DC France
U Military Science > U Military Science (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Algerian War, Contemporary France, Military Service Conscription, Cultural Memory, Media and Memory, Legacies of Colonialism
Funders: AHRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 08 May 2019 02:42

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