This is the first full-length survey in any language of the fiction and film generated in France by the Algerian war (1954 - 1962).
Although part of a much wider process of decolonization, the conflict was so traumatic decolonization, the conflict was so traumatic that it brought France to the verge of civil war. Its memory continues to haunt French society today. Like America's experience in Vietnam, it has been understood as a paradigm of the collapse of Western certainties in the post-war period. Philip Dine's ground-breaking study examines the novels and films which deal with the war in an attempt to understand the lasting impact of the conflict. By locating texts within institutional and public discourses, it addresses issues of historical agency and ideological dissemination and casts light on the mechanics of literary mystification. Among the writers discussed are Camus, Etcherelli, Millecam, Peree, Cesbron, Clavel, Ikor, Larteguy, Saint-Laurent, and Jules Roy, and the book also explores the films of directors including Godard, Schoendoerffer, Resnais, Tavernier, and Pontecorvo. All quotations in French are accompanied by English translations.
Innovative and accessible, Images of the Algerian War will interest all teachers and students of the culture and politics of modern France, together with all those concerned with issues of decolonization.
`Dine has done us all a service by illuminating and discussing this literature with perception and insight...excellent study of how a nation tries and fails to come to terms with a painful experience of its past'
Journal of Military History
`continuously intelligent and engrossing study'
Times Higher Education Supplement
`Dine's literary study is excellent ... his selection is generous and there is much to learn by historians about the overlapping of witnesses' memoirs and novelists' inventions: after a crisis which involved a full generation of conscripts, it is often difficult to disentangle fiction for factual data.'
Pierre Sorlin, University of Paris, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, Vol. 16, No. 1, 1996
`closely researched study ... Political complexities and the problematics of literary text are both impressively dealt with.'
Forum for Modern Language Studies, XXXIII,2, 1997