Geneviève de Gaulle-Anthonioz
After joining the resistance just after the occupation of France in June 1940, she expanded the present information networks, in particular the group “Défense de la France”. Arrested by P. Bonny, of the 93rd Band of Rue Lauriston, on July 20, 1943, she was imprisoned in Fresnes and was later deported to the concentration camp of Ravensbrück on February 2, 1944. In October of that year, she was placed in isolation in the camp bunker. This decision was taken by Heinrich Himmler in order to keep her alive and use her as a possible exchange prisoner. She was released in April 1945 and, the following year, married Bernard Anthonioz, a fellow resistance member and art editor, with whom she had four children.
Gaulle-Anthonioz wrote a book, fifty years after her release from Ravensbrück, speaking of her life in the concentration camp and the mutual help among the women. This book was called La Traversée de la nuit (literally, The Crossing of the Night). It was translated to English and published by Arcade Publishing as The Dawn of Hope: A Memoir of Ravensbrück [ISBN 1-55970-498-5], and re-published by Points in 1998 as God Remained Outside - An Echo of Ravensbruck.
As an active member and later president of the ADIR (Association of Deportées and Internées of the Résistance), she filed lawsuits against Nazi war criminals, then took part in the rise of the political movement launched by her uncle, the Rally of the French People.
In 1958, she worked with the cabinet of André Malraux when she met Father Joseph Wresinski, then chaplain of the town of Noisy-le-Grand. The sufferings of the families she met there revived those which she and other deportees had experienced. In 1987, she testified in the case of the Nazi Klaus Barbie.
Allied with the movement ATD Quart Monde, then as a permanent volunteer, she served as president of the movement from 1964 to September 2001.
In 1988 she became a member of the French Economic and Social Council, and for ten years fought for the adoption of a law against great poverty. Deferred in 1997 due to dissolution of the French National Assembly, her law was voted in in 1998.
- La traversée de la nuit, Editions du Seuil, Paris, 1998
- God Remained Outside - An Echo of Ravensbruck (Translation), 1999, ISBN 0-285-63530-1
- Le secret de l'espérance, Fayard / Editions Quart Monde, Paris, 2001
- Médaille de la Résistance
- Croix de guerre 1939-1945
- Grand'Croix de la Légion d'honneur (first woman to receive it)
Price of human rights in France and the rest of the world in 1994.
- General Charles de Gaulle dedicated his Mémoires de guerre to her
- Benoit Cazenave, Geneviève de Gaulle, in Hier war das Ganze Europa, Stiftung Brandenburgische Gedenkstätte, Editions Metropol Verlag, Berlin 2004.
- Genevieve Gaulle-Anthonioz (1998). The Dawn of Hope: A Memoir of Ravensbruck (also known as God Remained Outside - An Echo of Ravensbruck. Arcade Publishing.
- Related to the website of CIDEM (file .pdf)
- Discussion with Francoise Colpin
- The official site of ATD Quart Monde