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Author ORCID Identifier



Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program

Comparative Literature

Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded


First Advisor

Catherine Portuges

Second Advisor

James Young

Third Advisor

Anne Ciecko

Fourth Advisor

William Moebius

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities


In this dissertation I profile and compare the lives and works of Charlotte Delbo, Noor Inayat Khan, and Germaine Tillion, who were of the same generation and who actively participated in the French Resistance during the Holocaust. I discuss ways in which these writers frequently infuse modes of art and frequently theater into their works, in literary characters, situations, imagery, and gendered subjectivity. I introduce my notion of “writing resistance,” by which I mean not only these writers’ eye witness accounts and representations of the historical events of WW II, but especially their subjective, often quite intimate reflections on their own personal engagements in initiatives aimed at resisting the devastating onslaught of Nazi power. “Writing resistance” thus examines how these writers’ works and experiences foreground their respective roles as résistantes.