University of Minnesota
Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies
chgs@umn.edu
612-624-0256


CHGS

HGMV Workshop: "An Upheaval of Memory: The Collision of Dutch Resistance Literature and National History"

HGMV Workshop: "An Upheaval of Memory: The Collision of Dutch Resistance Literature and National History"

Thursday, March 26, 3:00pm
Social Sciences 710
Jazmine Contreras
"An Upheaval of Memory: The Collision of Dutch Resistance Literature and National History"


405-Dutch-National-Monument-E.jpg

This paper examines the Dutch experience of German occupation during World War II through the use of memoirs. These memoirs, written by individuals with firsthand experiences of the occupation, shed light upon the categories of victim, bystander, and collaborator, which tend to be overemphasized when discussing wartime activity. Part of the paper is dedicated to problematizing these categories, especially when they obfuscate wartime experiences that do not fit neatly within the narratives created by the Dutch government. The second half of the paper, examines the memoirs in the context of government narratives which state that the Dutch were simultaneously heroes and victims during the occupation. Despite the explicit overgeneralization of this narrative, its power over Dutch memory of WWII has not diminished. Within academic circles, historians and social scientists alike have debated how to characterize the efforts of the Dutch population in light of the deportation of a majority of the Jewish population. The government has also shied away from engaging with this reality and the rampant anti-Semitism that took place after liberation.

Jazmine is a second year PhD student in the History Department at the University of Minnesota. Her work focuses on gender and sexuality in the German-occupied Netherlands during World War II, specifically fraternization between German soldiers and Dutch women.