"On behalf of my comrades" : transnational private memories of German prisoners of war in U.S. captivity / by Andrea Weis.
On May 8, 1945 eleven to twelve million Germans experienced the fall of National Socialist Germany while in Allied captivity;1 four million German soldiers experienced it as captives of the United States. These Germans not only had to negotiate and respond to "victorious" Americans who judged them by standards different from those in the regime for which they fought, but also had to put into perspective their active investment in a political and social structure that had initiated and carried out global war and genocide. This study analyzes nine personal interviews conducted between 2001 and 2004 to address how German soldiers and war prisoners remember their "private" experiences of the rupture of Germany's defeat and their transnational relations with U.S. personnel in captivity. By employing popular memory theory, it will investigate how German veterans, sixty years after the war, compose private memories and senses of self in the persistent shadows of their National Socialist past.1This number includes a small percentage of persons of other nationalities who had to fight or volunteered to fight for the Germans in western and eastern war theaters. The number also includes civilians who had worked for National Socialist offices and organizations.
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