Episode 26: “We’ll Always Have Paris: A Visit from Hitler”

“Everyone in Paris once.” – German military catchphrase

This week, we’ll continue our series “We’ll Always Have Paris” focusing on the history of tourism in France. Tuesday was D-Day, so let’s take a look at an understudied element of the hospitality industry: occupation tourism. What happens when an entire army comes to town? What happens when your conquerors are also your customers? How do you defend your country if the other side is keeping your economy afloat? And what if the best way to keep your city safe…is to allow your greatest enemy to walk in through the front door? This week, we’ll study one of the strangest and most consequential vacations in history, when Adolf Hitler put World War II on hold and went on a morning stroll through Paris.

Episode 26: “We’ll Always Have Paris: A Visit from Hitler”

Photos of Hitler in Paris

Hitler in Paris, 1940
Hitler in Paris, 1940

 

Rare Film Footage – Adolf Hitler in Paris

 

Adolf Hitler in front of the Eiffel Tower, Paris.
Adolf Hitler in front of the Eiffel Tower, Paris.

 

Adolf Hitler at the Opera Garnier, Paris.
Adolf Hitler at the Opera Garnier, Paris.

 

Adolf Hitler in front of Sacre Coeur, Paris.
Adolf Hitler in front of Sacre Coeur, Paris.

 

German Luftwaffe soldiers at a Paris café, 1941 (Bundesarchiv)
German Luftwaffe soldiers at a Paris café, 1941 (Bundesarchiv)
German soldiers on the Metro (Bundesarchiv)
German soldiers on the Metro (Bundesarchiv)

 

The Paris Opera decorated with swastikas for a festival of German music, 1941 (Bundesarchiv)
The Paris Opera decorated with swastikas for a festival of German music, 1941 (Bundesarchiv)

 

Superimposed image by Sergey Larenkov
Superimposed image by Sergey Larenkov

 

Sources:

Inside the Third Reich – Albert Speer

We’ll Always Have Paris: American Tourists in France Since 1930 – Harvey Levenstein

“I Felt Like A Tourist Instead of A Soldier”: The Occupying Gaze – War and Tourism in Italy, 1943-1945 – Andrew Buchanan, American Quarterly, September 2016.

Parisians: An Adventure History of Paris – Graham Robb

“Warfare and Tourism: Paris in World War II” – Bertram Gordon, Annals of Tourism Research, 1998

“Paris Through Enemy Eyes: The Wehrmacht in Paris 1940-1944” – Melanie Gordon Krob, Journal of European Studies, 2001.

 

Further Reading:

LET’S TALK PARIS! You can see my own recommendations here, but don’t forget to talk about it on the show’s Facebook page!