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Belgium Under German Occupation in World War I Lecture by Dr. Sophie De Schaepdrijver

When Jun 06, 2012
from 07:30 PM to 08:30 PM
Where Pennsylvania Military Museum in Boalsburg
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Dr. Sophie De Schaepdrijver, Associate Professor of Modern European History, Penn State University

During the First World War, large parts of northern France, as well as most of Belgium, were occupied by German troops. This area, in the hinterland of the German trenches, became a theater of operations for secret intelligence networks gathering military information for the Allied armies, especially the British. The German secret police pursued these networks with zeal; three hundred spies were executed. One of the executed was a young woman, Gabrielle Petit, the head of a small network. She was arrested, tried, and shot in 1916, at the age of 23. After the war, Petit was hailed as a "national heroine" in poetry, prose, and drama, in monuments and even movies. This lecture is about my current book project, which studies the life, work, and remembrance of this young woman, against the backdrop of military occupation, secret intelligence networks, and divided postwar memories. "

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