The Embrace of Unreason in France Leading Up to WWII

Monday, June 09, 2014

Paris Paris (Antonio Ponte/flickr)

Frederick Brown tells the story of France in the decades leading up to World War II. The Embrace of Unreason: France 1914-1940 shows through how the French intelligentsia turned away from the humanistic traditions and ideals of the Enlightenment in favor of submission to authority, patriotism, militarism, and xenophobia. Brown sees the Paris World’s Fair of 1937 as the  perfect representation of Europe’s cultural doomsday, featuring two enormous pavilions, the first built by Nazi Germany, the second by Soviet Russia.


Frederick Brown

Comments [5]

jgarbuz from Queens

Oh, if ever we had a Jewish president in the US, FORGEDDABOUTIT! God forbid! My mother the Holocaust survivor warned me that we must NEVER have a Jew at that level ever. She learned from WWII. The innocents suffer the most.

Jun. 09 2014 01:55 PM
Bill Zavatsky from New York City

How do you fit writers like Paul Morand and Thierry Maulnier (Jacques Talagrand) into all of this?

Jun. 09 2014 01:49 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

The problem countries during the Great Depression of the 1930s was to decide which was going to win out or be best, Communism or Fascism. Liberal Democracy had apparently failed, and of course leftist Jews were often seen as the face of Bolshevism. This is what ultimately led to the Holocaust, the willingness to turn the Jews over...

Jun. 09 2014 01:47 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

Oh, please! The LEft weakened France and made it ripe for the Wehrmacht to take in 1940! But all around France the fascists were taken control in response to Bolshevism. First it was Mussolini in Italy. Then Hitler in Germany. Then Spain by 1937. But we have to remember one thing: had there been no Bolshevik revolution in Russia in 1917 there would have been no fascism, Nazism or WWII. Nor the Holocaust.
It all started with the extreme Left.

Jun. 09 2014 01:45 PM
wayne Johnson Ph.D. from Bk

Does Mr. Brown see parallels between the 19th century anti-semitism and xenophobia and the current rise of Marie Le Pen and rightists parties in France.

Jun. 09 2014 01:36 PM

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