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dc.contributor.authorAbrahams, Paul Richard Adolpheen
dc.date.accessioned2015-10-15T09:08:25Z
dc.date.available2015-10-15T09:08:25Z
dc.date.issued1992-03-17en
dc.identifier.otherPhD.17323en
dc.identifier.urihttps://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/251528
dc.descriptionThis thesis examines the reaction of Haute-Savoie, a typical French department , to Vichy and the resistance movements. It argues most of the population in this Catholic conservative department initially embraced Vichy's ideals and was able to reconcile its support for the government's domestic policies with its hostility to the government's foreign policy. Vichy's popularity foundered, however, on policy implementation, and, in particular the implementation of economic policy. This study examines the conflict between traditional rural localities and the Vichy state which because of the demands of a war-time economy, was obliged to expand, in an unprecedented manner, its interference in the affairs of agricultural communities. However, this aspect of Vichy's bureaucratic revolution in government foundered on peasant obstructionism, in part motivated by patriotism - the peasants did not want to hand over produce which they thought would be sent to the Germans - but mostly motivated by financial self-interest (profits on the parallel markets were often considerable). Vichy's often inept meddling in local community affairs alienated the peasant who reacted by deliberately misinterpreting, subverting or even simply ignoring instructions from the centre. The thesis demonstrates that the price paid for Vichy's failure to harness the agricultural population was that the inhabitants of France's largest conglomerations began to suffer deteriorating nutritional standards and mortality rates - a deterioration for which town-dwellers blamed both the peasants and the administration. This deterioration in living standards not only politically radicalised much of poorer sections of France's urban population while at the same time undermining Vichy's legitimacy, but also set the scene for bitter clashes between town-originating maquisards and many traditional Catholic and conservative agricultural communities. Peasant rejection of Vichy's administration id not necessarily result in support for the resistance movements. Those actively resisting in Haute-Savoie remained a tiny minority. Most peasants preferred not to commit themselves and resented maquisard demands often as much as Vichy's. Although, a culture of the outlaw existed in some areas where the population actively supported the resistance, in other districts the relationship quickly broke-down. In these areas, a substantial minority of peasants in rural communities, frightened by resistance violence and the possibility of Communist seizure of power, reacted by joining Vichy's anti-resistance Millice. This thesis argues that after the liberation the resistance movements were politically marginalised. This was partly caused by their pre-liberation behaviour. However, the failure of the liberation authorities to eliminate the black market and lawlessness also alienated the population. Attempts by former resistants to impose their political doctrines on peasant communities by dominating the municipal councils were rejected in the elections of 1945 when the resistance candidates were often beaten or forced to compromise with pre-liberation power structures.en
dc.rightsAll Rights Reserveden
dc.rights.urihttps://www.rioxx.net/licenses/all-rights-reserved/en
dc.titleHaute-Savoie at war: 1939-1945en
dc.typeThesisen
dc.type.qualificationlevelDoctoral
dc.type.qualificationnameDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.publisher.institutionUniversity of Cambridgeen
dc.publisher.departmentFaculty of Historyen
dc.identifier.doi10.17863/CAM.16037


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