Marginal Enemies

By Norman Beaupré


Two boys grow up during World War II, Gerard in New England, Morgen in Berlin. They live parallel lives: their families experience similar changes, similar suffering. The world says they are enemies. What makes an enemy? Why are people designated as enemies? If these two later met, what would they think of each other?

WWII and the Hitler’s elimination of the undesirables alter the daily lives of both boys immeasurably. Morgen’s father, a pacifist doctor, deserts his own troops and escapes with a Viennese friend, himself a marked man. The parallel situations of the two boys and their families balance the two sides of the war. We see, not the propaganda, but the real effects the war had on civilians in both countries. We also see the ‘forgotten’ undesirables such as Gypsies, homosexuals, blacks and Japanese-Americans. Woven into all these lives is the quest for sanity and freedom from hatred.

About the author:

Norman Beaupré was born in Maine. He received a Ph.D. from Brown University and taught at the University of New England where he is now Professor Emeritus. He has traveled extensively and spent two sabbaticals in Paris. He is the author of 23 published books. He writes in English and in French. In 2008, he was awarded the medal of “Ordre des Arts et Lettres” by the French Ministry of Culture and Communications in Paris for his outstanding contribution to French culture.

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