In the late 1880s and early 1890s, there was a climate of agitation in France because of the Boulanger crisis which fueled nationalism. This nationalist movement split but the 1930s saw a growth of French fascism and during WWII many French collaborated with the Nazis. The origin of such rise of fascism in France probably has its origins in the 1890s. The Republic survived the threat of General Boulanger. The French then embarked on a policy of colonial expansion. Boulanger had made the army popular before its suicide in 1891.
The Eiffel Tower was a Republican symbol in the 1890s (opposed to the Sacré-Coeur). At this time, there were celebrations of French Revolution and lavish banquets were organized 15000 French nobles. They stressed the Republican legacy whereas monarchists wanted to restore the Ancien Regime' before. There was a process of Ralliement.
In 1892, the Panama Canal Affair broke out. The engineer Ferdinand de Lesseps and Gustave Eiffel were both involved in this Affair. They suffered from financial difficulties and unhealthy circumstances of construction. Hence, they had to raise more capital and got the State to run a lottery to raise funds. There were rumors of corruption about a number of politicians. Several Republican politicians were discredited because they were accused of bribery.
[...] In this context, the Dreyfus affair provoked a split within the French society. The Prime Minister Méline asserted ‘There is not Dreyfus Affair' but the ideological division was inevitable. Socialist intellectuals were opposed to nationalists. Consequentially, there was a great political conspiracy. The Republicans emerged strengthened. With the anticlerical methods used by the government, the Dreyfus affair marked a turning point. In the following years, there were huge struggles between the Church and the State. The government expelled socialists from participation in the government. [...]
[...] In 1914, this Socialist party had 90,000 members and 104 deputies in Parliament. The socialists were gaining influence.The most famous leader of the party was Jean Jaurès. However, it was the right wing which first had modern mass politics in France. The extreme right developed an ideology: ‘integral nationalism' (Maurras). It had an influence on Italian fascism in the 1920s. It was the background of the Dreyfus Affair. Barrès, Maurras and Déroulède were the most famous leaders of the extreme right. [...]
[...] On the other hand, this affair weakened the radicals. Moderate benefited from the case to increase their representation. The government led Méline implemented agricultural and industrial reforms. Méline was known above all for tariff he introduced in 1892. It brought together the interests of the industrial bourgeoisie, big landowners and peasant farmers. These measures were part of Europe-wide tendency towards protectionism. After the disaster of the grape vine disease (phylloxera) in the 1870s, it was an attempt to protect French Wine production. [...]
[...] Clemenceau Tiger', ‘Prime of cops') led the country. From the perspective of socialists, it was an authoritarian and bourgeois state. References - Alexander, M. S. (1999), French History since Napoleon, Arnold, London. - Cahm, E. (1996), The Dreyfus Affair in French Society and Politics, Longman, London. - Rémond, R. (1969), The Right Wing in France from 1815 to De Gaulle - Anderson R. D. (1977), France 1870-1914. Politics and Society - Harris, R. [...]
[...] France: the Dreyfus Affair and the Third Republic (1890-1914) In the late 1880s and early 1890s, there was a climate of agitation in France because of the Boulanger crisis which fueled nationalism. This nationalist movement split but the 1930s saw a growth of French fascism and during WWII many French collaborated with the Nazis. The origin of such rise of fascism in France probably has its origins in the 1890s. The Republic survived the threat of General Boulanger. The French then embarked on a policy of colonial expansion. [...]
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