The Mobilization of Intellect
French Scholars and Writers During the Great War
By (author) Martha Hanna
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Mobilization of Intellect by Martha Hanna
Book DescriptionFrance went to war in 1914 not only in the trenches but also in the mind. When President Poincare called upon the intellectual elite to contribute to the war effort with "their pens and their words", the "union sacre" of scholars and writers - including Henri Bergson, Pierre Duhem, Ernest Lavisse, and Emile Durkheim - united French intellects against German "Kultur". Yet, as Martha Hanna points out, there were ambiguities and insecurities in such fields as Kantian ideas, classicism and science. Behind the facade of unity, the French intelligentsia was riven by the same fundamental divisions that had characterized it before the war. For example, the Republican Left argued that German nationalism and militarism began after Kant, with Fichte or Hegel, while the Catholic and nationalistic reactionary Right denounced Kant as the evil inspiration of France's liberal democracy and public school system. The heated rhetoric of the war and the unbearable loss of young lives, says Hanna, lent weight to a redefinition of French Culture in national terms - and this, ironically, ended in the cultural conservatism of Vichy France.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780674577558
(235mm x 155mm x 25mm)
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 3-Jun-1996
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Martha Hanna
Your Death Would be Mine, Paperback (September 2008)» View all books by Martha Hanna
Paul and Marie Pireaud, a young peasant couple from southwest France, were newlyweds when World War I erupted. With Paul in the army from 1914 to 1919, they were forced to conduct their marriage by correspondence. This book draws upon the hundreds of letters they wrote and tells their moving story and reveals a personal perspective on war.
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Author Biography - Martha Hanna
Martha Hanna is Professor of History, University of Colorado at Boulder.
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