Link to the University of Pittsburgh Homepage
Link to the University Library System Homepage Link to the Contact Us Form

The project of Liberation and the projection of national identity. Calvo, Aragon, Jouhandeau, 1944-1945

Nayak-Guercio, Aparna (2006) The project of Liberation and the projection of national identity. Calvo, Aragon, Jouhandeau, 1944-1945. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

Primary Text

Download (1MB) | Preview


This dissertation focuses on the months of liberation of France, June 1944 to May 1945. It analyzes three under-studied works taken as samples of texts that touch upon the question of contested identities. The texts are chosen from the main divisions of the political spectrum, namely Gaullist, far right, and far left. Although the focus is on the texts themselves, I trace the arguments found in these works to the larger discourses in which they are inscribed. In particular, I address the questions of guilt and innocence, justice and vengeance, past and future in the given historical circumstances. The first chapter examines "Le droit romain n'est plus" by Louis Aragon. I focus on the discussion of justice, vengeance, and punishment as they emerge from the text, notions that are embedded in the broader polemics among the intellectuals of the Resistance. I discuss the importance of music in this story where it plays the role of a structuring device. Finally, I examine the associations that can be made between writing, music and nationalism in the larger context of national identity.The second chapter deals with La Bete est morte! La guerre mondiale chez les animaux by Calvo. It is an allegory using animals as protagonists and is in comic book format. I discern three loci in the narration that work together in order to re-inscribe the national identity in the values of the republic, thereby providing its young readers with a grammar of good and evil, patriotism and treason, guilt and absolution. The third chapter is a discussion of Journal sous l'Occupation by Marcel Jouhandeau who flirted with Fascism in the 1930s and manifested his anti-Semitism in articles and a book. I read his Journal sous l'Occupation as a public testimony in writing of his purge trial that never happened. I investigate the question of fear, the process of self-exoneration in his reasoning, the question of the journal as instrument of self-definition, and discuss personal and national identity.The conclusion focuses on Guy Kohen's Retour d'Auschwitz and ties the different works and contemporary journalistic discourses together.


Social Networking:
Share |


Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairWatts, Philipwatts@pitt.eduWATTS
Committee MemberOrbach, Alexanderorbach@pitt.eduORBACH
Committee MemberMecchia, Giuseppinamecchia@pitt.eduMECCHIA
Committee MemberInsana, Linainsana@pitt.eduINSANA
Committee MemberHatcher, Robertahatcher@pitt.eduHATCHER
Date: 5 June 2006
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 13 December 2005
Approval Date: 5 June 2006
Submission Date: 18 April 2006
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > French
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: France; months of Liberation; World War II
Other ID:, etd-04182006-110417
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:38
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:40


Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item