Andre Gide and the Second World War: A Novelist's Occupation by Jocelyn Van Tuyl

By Jocelyn Van Tuyl

The first entire learn of Gide’s overlooked wartime writings.

Arguably the main influential French author of the early 20th century, André Gide is a paradigmatic determine whose international struggle II writings provide an exemplary mirrored image of the demanding situations dealing with a number one author in a time of nationwide cave in. Tracing Gide’s circuitous “intellectual itinerary” from the autumn of France during the postwar purge, this e-book examines the ambiguous function of France’s senior guy of letters in the course of the moment international battle. The writer’s difficult maneuverings provide privileged insights into 3 problems with vast value: the connection of literature and politics in France in the course of global warfare II, the repressions and repositionings that proceed to gas controversy concerning the interval, and the function of public intellectuals in occasions of nationwide crisis.

With the exception of the early wartime Journal, Gide’s guides in the course of France’s “dark years” have bought little serious consciousness. This e-book scrutinizes the complete wartime oeuvre intensive, tracing the evolution of Gide’s political opinions and, most significantly, interpreting the wartime texts opposed to one another. it's the interaction between those texts that unearths the complete complexity of Gide’s political positionings and the rhetorical brilliance he deployed to redress his tarnished image.

“…[An] super well-researched and grounded account of André Gide’s warfare years and their reconfiguration after the Armistice … van Tuyl is a wonderful consultant via a murky and unsightly period.” — South Atlantic Review

“…this is a provocative and well-written study.” — Times Literary Supplement

“...[this] valuable publication offers an leading edge research of the vagaries of Gide’s meandering … Gide uses his texts as automobiles for retouching his personal photograph, and his case serves as a uniquely inventive reaction to the matter of the highbrow confronted with the destabilizing strength of war.” — The French Review

“Van Tuyl has assembled a variety of well-researched and well-supported arguments that repair to its valuable breadth and intensity the old and ideological context of the interval. The ebook is a transparent, concise, and thorough remedy of Gide’s actions round international warfare II and is a sophisticated reference paintings that may be necessary to students and scholars of Gide for years to come.” — Walter Putnam, The college of latest Mexico

“This is a rare inspect a guy who alleged utter frankness yet may in simple terms be as sincere as his altering view of himself permitted.” — Kenneth Krauss, writer of The Drama of Fallen France: Reading los angeles Comédie sans Tickets

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Example text

Did Pétain himself deliver it? Freely? One suspects some infamous deceit. How can one speak of France as “intact” after handing over to the enemy more than half of the country? How to make these words fit those noble words he pronounced three days ago? How can one fail to approve Churchill? 56 Is it not enough for France to be conquered? Must she also be dishonored? (J 4: 24)57 In later years, Gide would point to this early expression of support for de Gaulle as proof of his long-standing resistance allegiances.

This reaction set the tone for the Journal in the coming years. Throughout the phony war and early Occupation, Gide’s literary production consisted almost entirely of this war-inflected diary with its alternating silences and outpourings, its attempts to ignore then to understand. This chapter examines Gide’s political and intellectual trajectory from Munich to Montoire—from the 1938 pact that paved the way for Hitler’s expansionism to the 1940 encounter that set France on a course of collaboration with Germany.

The full force of Gide’s sorrow and censure are apparent throughout the month of July 1940. Indeed, entries from this month are among those most often cited by Gide’s detractors. In the somber days leading up to the first Fête Nationale of the Occupation—by Vichy decree, a national day of mourning with church services for the dead rather than affirmations of France’s republican values—Gide made three diary entries that would later be denounced as attacks on French patriotism. Gide believed that nine out of ten Frenchmen would accept German domination if it guaranteed abundance, and lamented that French peasants cared more about the price of grain than about cultural luminaries like Descartes or Watteau.

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