The latest installment of the Military History Podcast Series features a presentation by Jennifer Morawetz entitled “Les Enfants de Boche and their Mothers.”
In this presentation Morawetz explores the phenomenon of French-German born children in Nazi occupied France and the demeaning punishment their mothers often suffered. She seeks to understand why these women had relations with German men – a social faux-pas in wartime France – and their place in the immediate aftermath of the war. As Morawetz points out, no laws existed to punish these women and a policy of forgiveness was advised so that the children would be accepted. While this policy was meant to protect the women and their children, the mothers were often subject to social punishment and humiliation. The full scope of their experience – and those of the children – is still largely unknown, and as Morawetz points out, research into ‘Les Enfants de Boche’ often raises more questions than answers.