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Occupation, Race, and Empire

Maxence Van der Meersch's Invasion 14

W. Brian Newsome

In his 1935 novel Invasion 14, Maxence Van der Meersch painted a nuanced picture of the German invasion and occupation of northern France during World War I. Despite local controversy, Invasion 14 won national and international praise, losing the Prix Goncourt by a single vote. Though neglected in the wake of World War II, when the author's treatment of Franco-German relations between 1914 and 1918 ran headlong into evolving myths of widespread resistance between 1940 and 1944, Invasion 14 has garnered renewed attention as a window onto the occupation of World War I. Heretofore unappreciated, however, is Van der Meersch's use of colonial themes of race and empire. Based on research in the Archives Maxence Van der Meersch, this study explores the author's treatment of colonial motifs, demonstrating their centrality to the novel and the debate it generated.

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Rethinking World War I

Occupation, Liberation, and Reconstruction

George Robb and W. Brian Newsome

), chap. 10. Even literary responses to occupation, most notably Maxence Van der Meersch’s novel Invasion 14 (1935), have enjoyed a remarkable renaissance. In 2014 Albin Michel reissued Invasion 14 . It is also available in English translation: Maxence

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Nicole Hudgins

Raemaekers. 31 In both fiction and nonfiction during the war, French authors continually used the language of wounds, and even murder, to describe destroyed property. 32 Sometimes shelled buildings were likened to bodies, as in Maxence Van der Meersch’s

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Sandbags, Strikes, and Scandals

Public Disorder and Problematic Policing in Occupied Roubaix during World War I

James E. Connolly

affaire is a celebrated work of fiction (or “faction”) concerning the occupation: Maxence Van der Meersch’s 1935 novel Invasion 14 , much of which concentrated on events in the author’s native Roubaix. 17 However, despite the ambiguities present in