*Savage Continent*

That is the new book by Keith Lowe, with the subtitle Europe in the Aftermath of World War II.  Excerpt:

The number of sexual relationships that took place between European women and Germans during the war is quite staggering.  In Norway as many of 10 percent of women aged between fifteen and thirty had German boyfriends during the war.  If the statistics on the number of children born to German soldiers are anything to go by, this was by no means unusual…

Resistance movements in occupied countries came up with all kinds of excuses for the behaviour of their women and girls.  They characterized women who slept with Germans as ignorant, poor, even mentally defective.  They claimed that women were raped, or that they only slept with Germans out of economic necessity.  While this was undoubtedly the case for some, recent surveys show that women who slept with German soldiers came from all classes and all walks of life.  On the whole European women slept with Germans not because they were forced to, or because their own men were absent, or because they needed money or food — but simply because they found the strong, “knightly” image of the German soldiers intensely attractive, especially compared to the weakened impression they had of their own menfolk.  In Denmark, for example, wartime pollsters were shocked to discover that 51 per cent of Danish women openly admitted to finding German men more attractive than their own compatriots.

Nowhere was this need more keenly felt than in France…

You can buy the book here.


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