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Marianne or Germania?Nationalizing Women in Alsace, 1870-1946$
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Elizabeth Vlossak

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199561117

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199561117.001.0001

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‘Malaise Alsacien’—Malaise féminin? Alsatian Women's Identity in Question, 1918–39

‘Malaise Alsacien’—Malaise féminin? Alsatian Women's Identity in Question, 1918–39

Chapter:
(p.209) 5Malaise Alsacien’—Malaise féminin? Alsatian Women's Identity in Question, 1918–39
Source:
Marianne or Germania?
Author(s):

Elizabeth Vlossak

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199561117.003.0006

The administrative, legal, civil, constitutional and political transitions that took place in Alsace and Lorraine after 1918 caused the ‘Malaise alsacien’. This chapter explores the extent to which this malaise was gendered, and whether it led Alsatian women to question their national loyalties and identity. The controversial identity card system illuminates how French nationality laws discriminated against married women, an issue that became a cause célèbre of the French feminist movement throughout the 1920s. The newly-adopted French Civil Code curtailed the rights of Alsatian women who also remained entirely excluded from formal politics, unlike German women who won the right to vote in 1918. However, while Alsatian women actively opposed French attempts to secularize the region after 1924, they did not join French feminist organizations in great numbers, nor did they participate in the regionalist and autonomist movements, or receive support from German nationalist women's associations.

Keywords:   Malaise alsacien, interwar period, identity cards, French women and the Civil Code, French feminist movement, secularization, Alsatian autonomism

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