Narrating “Home”: Experiences of German Expellees after the Second World War

Authors

  • Vanessa Hughes University of London

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.25071/1920-7336.40381

Keywords:

Germany, World War II, forced displacement, expellees, home, homeland, heimat, narratives

Abstract

This article explores the experiences of forced displacement through the narratives of expellees in Germany after the Second World War. It considers how disruptions of “home” over time and space have led to constant deconstructing and reconstructing of home. Based on autobiographical interviews, this article argues that home is multidimensional and contradictory, changing over time and through experiences, becoming simultaneously connected to a specific place and time while transcending this rootedness. This continuous contestation of home has led expellees to form an imagined, idealized, and romanticized notion of their Heimat that exists in memory and is combined with their current home, Zuhause.

Published

2016-05-06

How to Cite

Hughes, V. (2016). Narrating “Home”: Experiences of German Expellees after the Second World War. Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees, 32(1), 28–37. https://doi.org/10.25071/1920-7336.40381