The title of the book ‘In Transit’—as a reference to the novel written by Anna Seghers—functions on two levels: On a narrative level, it is a primary metaphor for the fate of all German Jews who fled from the Third Reich and found themselves in France doubly stigmatized as Germans—the despised boches—and as juifs. On another level, ‘In Transit’ offers perspectives on the Occupation of France and the Vichy regime—the so-called Dark Years—that have not been part of the Vichy debate.
So how did German Jews who fled from Nazi Germany to France narrate and document their experiences? This book tells their stories, and in a sense brings them back home to Germany, where they always wanted to belong.
It is high time to bring these narratives out of exile and place them firmly on the ground of the Vichy regime.