This article addresses the many borders crossed by historians and those we study. It focuses on two families involved in a custody dispute in German-occupied Paris during World War II. Sometimes freely and sometimes under duress, the family members crossed physical borders between occupied and unoccupied parts of France, and perhaps between countries. They also crossed boundaries of expected family roles, religion, and moral behavior. Anti-Jewish laws and attitudes affected their lives and options at every turn. Historians too confront boundaries of evidence: Our informed historical imagination can offer likely conclusions to the stories we tell, but, in the end, we cannot go beyond where the evidence leads us.
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