Bastions or Brutes: French Antisemitism in the Press from 1894 to 1945
Johnson, Nathan Joseph
Modern Era Europe, a time strife with power struggle, nationalistic growth, and scarred people and landscapes. France, a country unsheltered from the era’s terrors, faced a great struggle not unique to the rest of Europe; a country, a political mechanism, and populations of people supporting and accelerating Antisemitic beliefs. The once brave bastions of freedom once again fell into tyranny - a self-tyranny in a sense - where racism and antisemitism ruled their agendas. Beginning with Alfred Dreyfus and his exile and still propagating to this day, the Free French have become less about freedom and more about oppression and purification. At the root of this evil stood several major French publications, pushing a political mechanism. How were these publications controlled, were they under ideological control of the government? Are the journalists of these publications under guise of the propaganda machine or are they free thinking individuals who whole heartedly see the Jewish population to blame for major French downfalls? Are the “freedom fighters”, who are writing in protection of the Jewish population, doing so by way of clear conscious or career incentivization? What personal risks do these journalists take from the burden of speaking their truths? Also, as the period progresses and the 20th century truly takes hold, are the antisemitic beliefs held by the French remnants of the Dreyfus Affair, or are they influenced by current ideas held in Nazi Germany?