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Paris: After the Liberation 1944-1949

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  552 Ratings  ·  49 Reviews
"A rich and intriguing story whcih the authors disentangle with great skill."--Sunday Telegraph

Beevor's Ardennes 1944: The Battle of the Bulge is now available from Viking Books 

In this brilliant synthesis of social, political, and cultural history, Antony Beevor and Artemis Cooper present a vivid and compelling portrayal of the City of Lights after its liberation. Paris b
Paperback, Revised, 464 pages
Published August 31st 2004 by Penguin Books (first published 1994)
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Jun 26, 2007 rated it it was amazing
“Paris After Liberation” is not just a book about a city, it is a gallant effort to draw the portrait of a society in transition from extreme conditions of a ruthless occupation and national confusion to the stability of normality and prosperity. Although historians talk much about the early years of 1940's and the war efforts, few have studied the later years of that most eventful decade, whose end witnessed the start of the cold war and a new chapter in global history.
“Paris After liberation”
It's definitely a particular kind of history with its own perspective, but it's so my thing and I loved it and I will write about it soon.
Czarny Pies
Nov 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Ceux qui ont aime Paris est une fete d'Ernest Heminway
Recommended to Czarny by: Tout le monde.
"Paris apres la liberation 1944-1949" est un louange glorieux a la France, a son peuple et a la culture comme seulement les anglais sont capables d'ecrire. Ce livre vient de la main d'Antony Beevor le grand historien des batailles sur le Front de l'est pendant la deuxieme grande mondiale et de sa femme Artemis Cooper la petite fille de Duff Cooper qui a ete ambassadeur anglais a Paris de 1944 a 1949.

Ce que l'on trouve dans"Paris apres la liberation" sont les souvenirs de la famille Cooper et leu
Alister Black
Jan 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, ww2, politics
The fascinating story of Paris, a centre of world cultural and intellectual life, both under the Nazi occupation and afterwards. The authors give a vivid portrayal of the class divides in French politics and society. We read of the collaboration of some conservatives with Vichy, and in some cases their enthusiastic participation in Nazi atrocities. The post war world saw them lose their place to be replaced in many cases, if not all, by those who participated in resistance.

The Communist Party (P
Feb 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
An utterly interesting and compelling book. Well-researched and highly illuminating, full of interesting facts as well as juicy titbits from the life and intrigues of contemporary French (and emigré) writers, thinkers and artists living in Paris, from Sartre and Beauvoir to Mauriac and Camus, from Picasso to Derain and from Arletty to Yves Montand, "collabos" (or suspects) and "résistants" ,aristocrats and Comummunsts, everything and everybody else in-between, while also faithfully chronicling t ...more
Apr 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I bought this book after reading 'Suite Francaise' and being intrigued by France under the Occupation. I have also read Beevor's Stalingrad and Berlin, both of which were absorbing.

This book has been very much in the 'can't put down' class. It would be easy to expect that the minutiae of post-war French politics would be both boring and confusing, but the writing style saves us. And by interspersing chapters on social matters such as fashion, theatre and lifestyles, the reader is drawn through t
David Lowther
Jun 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's ironic that a book that's partly about collaboration should itself be a terrific example of collaboration between the husband and wife team of Antony Beevor and Artemis Cooper. Who dealt with what aspects of life in Paris between 1944 and 1949 I neither know nor care.

The book covers, in gripping fashion, the revenge on the collaborators, the political turmoil, the cultural history of the period with writers like Sartre and painters like Picasso prominent, the re-birth of Paris fashion (Dio
Aug 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I cannot stress how important this book is in understanding the zeitgeist of Paris, France, and Europe after the war. A must read for anyone who wants a stronger understanding on how the trends and wants of our generation are the way they are.
Rob Innis
Oct 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Having read many other of Beevor's books I was disappointed with this one and could not engage. Managed to extract some useful info but found myself scan reading, not one of his classics.
Mark Adkins
Aug 28, 2015 rated it liked it
I will start by saying I did not know much about the politics of France (and still don't know much), must of the reading I have done on France has been regarding the battles fought on French soil during the two world wars.

This book as the title suggests talks about what happened after the battles when the city of Paris was liberated and the effects that the liberation had on the people and city and France in general.

This book was interesting for the most part, there were sections that I lost int
Joaquim Alvarado
Aug 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Beevor no només és especialista en batalles. En aquesta obra ens brinda les diferències internes de la política, la societat i la intel·lectualitat francesa després de l'alliberament de París. Excel·lent retrat dels tics totalitaris de De Gaulle, de les diferències de criteri entre els aliats i del paper distorsionador del sistema que van jugar els comunistes, així com del dia a dia dels intel·lectuals i artistes parisencs. De retruc, és una crítica a la idiosincràsia francesa, amb la "grandeur" ...more
Apr 29, 2013 rated it did not like it
There are so many good books on this subject that I would not bother with this one. I don't understand even the approach to the subject matter. Chapter 1 is about Petain and De Gaulle; 2 is The Paths of Collaboration and resistence. And so on. There is little if any carry over from one chapter to another. It's as if they had no mannequin to tack their story on to. Or that they just randomly started up new chapters when they had something they wanted to get into. I expected them to concentrate on ...more
Feb 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I'm re-reading this. It's from a few years back when Beevor wasn't quite as commercially aware as he is now. Excellent, and full of the most spectacularly interesting information!
Jul 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: hebrew
It's interesting to see how much power Communism held in the minds of people during and after WWII and how France too was in some danger of falling into the Soviet bear hug.

Paris being Paris it was also important to read about the cultural leaders of the time, though I wold have liked to see more of daily life instead of how drunk a an existentialist got at a party.
Mar 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dele af bogen var tung at komme igennem, men det skyldtes sandsynligvis mestendels min manglende interesse for kunstner-delen af den periode.
Don Janssen
Oct 24, 2015 rated it liked it
"De la Résistance à la Révolution" read the caption of 'Combat', the French underground newspaper that began to appear during the second World War. This 'slogan' has a slightly romantic undertone, just as the title of this book, "Paris after the Liberation" evokes some romantic images (if only for the photograph on the cover, Robert Doisneau's famous "La dernière valse du 14 juillet", representing a lonely dancing couple in nightly Paris).
However, this book describes a rather down-to-earth real
Nov 08, 2009 rated it liked it
Seventy years after Paris was liberated and the subsequent end of World War II, it's easy to forget the bitter divisions that existed in France. France's surrender at the beginning of the war led to the Vichy government under Petain which collaborated with the German occupiers,, but there was a burgeoning resistance movement which was itself divided into factions On one side were the communists, strong in France from before the war, and on the other, the government-in-exile led by Charles de Gau ...more
Nov 10, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Escrito en la línea de “Berlín, La Caída”, en esta obra Beevor nos cuenta los últimos días de Paris bajo el dominio nazis así como los meses posteriores al final de la guerra.
Tiene el mérito de desmitificar los hechos, tanto la importancia de la resistencia francesa como de la euforia posterior a la liberación, que pronto fue engullida por el hambre y el frío provocado por la catastrófica situación de Francia en la inmediata post-guerra.
También los golpes bajos y el clima casi de guerra civil qu
Joel Simon
Nov 28, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in the modern evolution of France and French politics
Recommended to Joel by: Scott Saks
This is my second Antony Beevor book (although this one was co-authored with Artemis Cooper) and I can say that I am a fan, although I think I enjoyed Stalingrad a bit more, due to its faster pace.

Paris After the Liberation gives a very interesting and detailed review of the struggle for the political soul of France between the Communist Party and just about everyone else. There are a lot of pages devoted to the literary, philosophical, art and music scene of the post-war period (Sartre, de Beau
Jul 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
In some ways, reading this book feels like cramming for a test from my notes--occasionally names come up that I don't quite remember, and the order of events is often unclear to me. But in the end, I don't mind. Even subjects that I would normally skip over have been addressed in such a way, and with enough brevity, that I enjoy knowing about them, particularly because they are generously peppered with pithy excerpts from the letters and journals of key players. I feel I'm acquiring a good gener ...more
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was ok
This was one of the few books in my life that I didn't finish. It wasn't that it was not worth reading, but the amount of detail was too much for someone who is not a specialist. Parts of it I read with interest, and parts I found myself wondering, "why do I care? I've never even heard of these people!" The quarrels between various members of the literary world, for example, were not very compelling since many of the minor participants were unknown to me. I felt that Beevor had tried to create a ...more
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Everybody knows about Normandy and the occupation and the horrible days of the war, but not many speak about the days after, the reconstruction, the political atmosphere and the difficulties of the everyday lives after the most horrible war in history.

So this is the French angel of the days and years after the war, the intelligence, the existentialists celebrities, the political traitors and their trials, diplomats and central figures in the days that shaped the fourth republic of De Gaul.

Dec 04, 2014 rated it liked it
Good book on post-war Paris when 50% of the population suddenly became "resistant". Readers who are less interested in gossipy name-dropping and dresses can skip Ms Coopers waver-thin chapters on Parisian socialites. Amusing to read about Marxist-Syndicalist struggles to discredit the post-war government. Chapter on hijack of cultural sector by Marxist "progressive" "intelligentsia" with "engagement" and the life of "useful idiots" (as Lenin would call them) like Sartre and de Beauvoir are very ...more
May 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: world-war-ii
Both comprehensive and cohesive, this work covers a lot of ground (immediate post-war score settling, international diplomacy, the return of refugees, coping with the influx of Americans, major changes in post-war culture in fashion, music, the theater, film, etc.) but still feels like unified whole, which is a testament to the two authors. So many topics are covered that no reader will be interested in all of them, but anyone interested in the subject will thoroughly enjoy this book.
Alexandre Rocha
Um livro interessante. Peca realmente como lhe foi criticado não seguir uma linha linear de raciocínio e para quem gosta de ler e reler com pausas, falta-lhe um índice onomástico (nenhum livro de Beevor parece tê-lo).

O título pode também induzir em erro, com o leitor a imaginar uma abrangência mais reduzida de temas.

Não obstante ter classificado com 3*, Beevor ainda assim figura na minha lista de predilectos.
Feb 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Politics, culture, war, social conditions, personalities, it's all covered in this engrossing read. The recovery from invasion and occupation is both complicated and unsettling - the authors are comprehensive in their coverage of so many aspects of this most difficult of situations. The book is invaluable as a study of a fairly modern society trying to re-establish itself.
Nov 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: france
Good! The peace was even messier than the war. Co-author Artemis Cooper's dad was GB's ambassador, so she had access to some special private archives. De Gaulle was a total pain, but the Commies were a real threat. De Gaulle won out. The sticky subjects of resistance and collaboration are deftly handled...
Aug 17, 2007 added it
Recommends it for: history nerds
am thinking my novel this novemer nanowrimo will be set roughly in this time period so i am doing double duty by getting a challenge book read and doing research. have only gotten through the introduction so no conclusive thoughts yet, but it has gotten good reviews and does seem to be a serious treatment of the topic.
Andy Strote
Apr 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paris, war
Fascinating book. Gets into areas I had never considered - influence of communism in France after the war, French governments falling faster than Italian ones, how artists and philosophers lived through the war, changing allegiances from time to time. My first book by this author.
Jan 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Always nice to read about a place you love in such a readable and anedoctal narrative style. It makes for a very entertaining reading and escapes the flaw of turning into just another dusty, boring historical book.
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Antony James Beevor is a British historian, educated at Winchester College and Sandhurst. He studied under the famous historian of World War II, John Keegan. Beevor is a former officer with the 11th Hussars who served in England and Germany for 5 years before resigning his commission. He has published several popular histories on the Second World War and 20th century in general.

More about Antony Beevor