Published on August 30th, 2019 | by James Drew


‘Children of the Resistance’ now on display at BELvue museum until 6 October

The comic strip
Children of the Resistance is now on display at the BELvue museum until 6 October 2019. The result of a collaboration between Lombard Publishing, and the BELvue museum, the Children of the Resistance exhibition plunges visitors into the world of the comic book, so they learn, in a fun way, about the challenging times of the resistance.

In a small French village that’s occupied by the German army, three children refuse to be defeated by the enemy. But how can they resist such a powerful enemy when they’re only 13 years old?  The Children of the Resistance has become a point of reference, an educational tool that’s won awards (Prix Cognito- Best historic album- Brussels 2015 / Prix des collégiensAngoulême international Festival of the comic strip, etc…)

The series has already sold nearly 400,000 copies. Each year, sales of the new album are doubled. To date, no fewer than 3,000 albums are sold every week. In under five years, sales of the series have grown 10 times! 5 albums have been published, and the 6th book, Désobéir, will be published in January 2020. The comic strip is on display at the BELvue museum in Brussels until 6 October.

The exhibition’s Commissioner Manon Aknin said: “The exhibition is in three languages: French, Dutch and English. It was important for us to include a “Belgian” component. The comic book is set in France, but the idea was also to talk about what happened in Belgium. We also wanted to add an educational angle: through playing a game, children learn more about the resistance: they discover how members of the resistance helped allied pilots get back to England, about using rationing coupons and creating false papers, etc. The scenes across three rooms have been designed with this in mind: The first room presents the background to the war: children can walk over a map of Europe, just like the comic strip characters on the front cover. The suitcases arranged below a panel talking about the population exodus not only link to this, but are also part of the game. The second room is designed like a typical hideout of resistance members, showing the kinds of tools often used by them: a typewriter, paint for writing slogans, leaflets, a fake version of the newspaper Le Soir, creating false papers, etc. The last room takes you into the living room of a person from this period, with the radio as the final part of the game: children can let England know about the allied pilot’s arrival and check whether they have successfully completed all the stages of the game. The idea was to create an exhibition that plunges the visitor into the world of the comic strip album, so they learn, in a fun way, about the challenging times of the resistance. Last but not least, a panel talks about the liberation of Belgium, in connection with the date of its anniversary on 2 September. ”

Translations: The first three volumes are published in Spanish and Catalan. The five volumes are available in Dutch. The first three volumes are available digitally in English; the first pages from volume 1 can be read for free here.

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