Essay on The Return Of Martin Guerre

1607 Words 7 Pages
The story of Martin Guerre has traversed centuries and borders. The Return of Martin Guerre (Daniel Vigne, 1982) is an adaptation of a true story of a southern sixteenth-century French village. This film has received attention from historical scholars, mainly because a well-established historian, Natalie Zemon Davis, was a “conseiller historique for the film” (Benson 49). Davis also generated her own academic history of the story after her experience as a consultant. She claims the film had given little consideration to historical facts that she supplied. She felt obligated to examine the case in detail and generate an academically acceptable version of the story. She asserts that this was the case since the film “generating not proofs, but historical possibilities” (Davis viii). The film has therefore created a wide field of literature, resulting in its increased academic use despite the fact that the film historically misrepresented the actual story. This paper examines the representation of Bertrande de Rols in the film with insights from Davis’s academic monograph, as Davis’s work gives a clear, more realistic, factual interpretation of the story with the accounts of the characters involved. Davis’s monograph and Vigne’s film must be comparatively explored to effectively examine the controversies in the film. Before doing so, I must provide an overview of the events that positioned Martin Guerre 's story in Davis’s monograph. It centers around a well-to-do…

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