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1939-1940 : l'internement en temps de guerre les politiques de la France et de la Grande-Bretagne

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  • Political Science


1939-1940: Internment in wartime. French and British policies, Anne Grynberg. At the beginning of the Second World War, France and Great Britain have both to face the question of aliens and refugges from the Third Reich who might be, according to some set ideas, dangerous spies of the Fifth Column. Since september 1939, internment camps are created but the British authorities decide in favour of a selective policy and most people are exempted. In France, on the other hand, the government doesn't make any difference at first between foreigners from these countries, whatever their origins or political opinions may be; sorting commissions are organized afterwards. In May 1940, with the increasing military danger, the English population is panic stricken. As the inclusive internment of aliens appears as a goof pledge to allay it, thousands of inmates are sent to the Isle of Man. In France, most of the men who had been liberated during the winter and women are arrested as well. At this period, aliens and refugees function as easy scapegoats in the two countries. Must this attitude be explained only in the context of war? It may be interesting to go ahead and to study it in the frame of the immigration policy of Great Britain and France during the thirties, clearly marked by nationalism and xenophobia.

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