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22 Comments | Vintage
This heartbreaking photo was taken in Montelimar, France, during the ending of World War II, where a French woman has her head shaved by civilians as a penalty for having consorted with German troops. At least 20,000 women had their heads shaved in France after liberation.
A large number of the victims were prostitutes who had simply plied their trade with Germans as well as Frenchmen, although in some areas it was accepted that their conduct was professional rather than political. Others were silly teenagers who had associated with German soldiers out of bravado or boredom.
But many victims were working in the German camps to make a living. While many were young mothers, whose husbands were in German prisoner-of-war camps. During the war, they often had no means of support, and their only hope of obtaining food for themselves and their children was to accept a liaison with a German soldier.
Looks like the guy in the back is about to pull a gun on her.
Man, i always found those shavings absolutely disgusting. Not so much because of the very act of shaving, but because of the men doing the shaving – most of whom did absolutely nothing against the Nazis for 4 years and suddenly found courage once Allied troops landed and liberated their country for them.
All respect to actual French guerrillas who spent years living illegally, but they were already a tiny minority in 1944 after a flood of newly motivated ”patriots” whose struggle consisted of posing around with weapons in an already liberated town, or maybe being redundantly involved in a skirmish that’s already being overwhelmingly won by Allied soldiers.
Saw a scene depecting this in Band Of Brothers
What generally happened with all those shaved woman on the coming years after the war? Were they ostracized decades later? Or people quickly forgot about them?
Same thing happened in Poland. Women that collaborated with Germans, or dated them (including the volksdeutsch) would have their heads shaven. If they still collaborated with the Germans after that, they would be executed.
(Although as opposed to the image above, the shavings and executions in Poland were done by actual fighting partisans, more precisely execution squads, that would also execute German officers, officials as well as collaborators that were sentenced by the Polish underground courts)
Looks like dude in the red shirt behind her is fixing to "take a little off of the top" as well.
Ironically most French citizens collaborated in one way or another, although post-war propaganda would like to convince otherwise. Some, like this young lady, paid a higher price than others.
They did this on occupied Guernsey too, being such a small community life would be very difficult after the war. The people would take out their pent up rage on these women. Unbearable times for all involved
Dude in the back left looks like he’s about to pop a cap
That guy on the right is 100% Jon Bernthal right?
What’s the context behind this? Is this something they did to prisoners?
Just got done watching band of brothers were the polish were doing this and my grandfather and I were talking about the french doing it as well apperntly some of these women were forced to be with the Germans
I’m going to start this trend here in my town if one of our women goes out with a foreigner. U mad bro?
Does anyone else get bothered that coco channel (founder of Chanel) was a nazi spy and fucked an SS officer with no real repercussions? She deserves worse than the normal collaborators and got virtually nothing bad her way
Is it just a shadow or does the guy shave your head have a little Hitler mustache
Does that brown sash on that guys harm have the Star of David on it???????????
I doubt that was the only punishment they inflicted on this woman.
Yeah, the brave french men punishing the women they failed to protect because they were hiding in the forrests
It happened in many postwar countries. France was not that specific.
I hope those women all walked away with their beautiful, bald heads held high. They did what they needed to do to survive. It’s what women have always had to do as men made war on other men.