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Fb2 The Hollow Years ePub

by Eugen Weber

Subcategory: Different
Author: Eugen Weber
ISBN: 1856196917
ISBN13: 978-1856196918
Language: English
Publisher: Sinclair-Stevenson Ltd (June 24, 1996)
Pages: 364
Fb2 eBook: 1778 kb
ePub eBook: 1941 kb
Digital formats: doc docx mbr txt

The Hollow Years' was an unsatisfying, yet compelling read. Eugen Weber offers his readers a truly kaleidoscopical view of what France (partly) was in the 1930's.

The Hollow Years' was an unsatisfying, yet compelling read. Each chapter centers a baffling amount of facts around themes as society, religion, morality, agriculture, demographics, the highs and lows of the French economy, and last but not least French politics. After having finished reading, the reader has digested such an amount of data that one wonders how Eugen Weber could have possibly called this book 'The hollow years'

Home Browse Books Book details, The Hollow Years: France in the 1930s. Publisher: W. W. Norton. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1994.

Home Browse Books Book details, The Hollow Years: France in the 1930s. The Hollow Years: France in the 1930s. Contributors: Eugen Weber.

The Hollow Years: France in the 1930s. Eugen Weber does a good job of understanding that the basic reader will be opening the book with the same question I had, and he takes the reader briskly through history and the results. New York & London: . By the time he wrote this book, Eugen Weber had already established himself as a premier historian of France and of modern Europe in general. Great Britain also had the disastrous Crimean War and the Boer War, plus the generation lost in the Great War.

Eugen Joseph Weber (April 24, 1925 – May 17, 2007) was a Romanian-born American historian with a special focus on Western civilization

Eugen Joseph Weber (April 24, 1925 – May 17, 2007) was a Romanian-born American historian with a special focus on Western civilization.

A scintillating introduction to this troubled French decade.

Caught between the memory of a brutal war won at frightful cost and fear of another cataclysm, France in the 1930s suffered a failure of nerve. Brilliantly chronicled here by a master historian, this fateful era could neither solve insoluble problems nor escape from them. Пользовательский отзыв - Kirkus. Weber (European History/UCLA; France, Fin de Siäcle, 1986; et. skillfully paints a somber portrait of France in decline. War and the threat of war shaped France in the 1930s.

Eugen Joseph Weber (April 24, 1925, Bucharest - May 17, 2007, Brentwood, Los Angeles, California) was a. .Weber's main interest was French history.

Eugen Joseph Weber (April 24, 1925, Bucharest - May 17, 2007, Brentwood, Los Angeles, California) was a prominent historian. At age 12, he was sent to boarding school in Herne Bay, in southeastern England, and later to Ashville College, Harrogate. His first book, "The Nationalist Revival in France, 1905–1914" was a study of integral nationalism in France in the decade before World War One. Weber was to follow this book with further studies in French fascism and right-wing radicalism in "Action Française" and "Varieties of Fascism".

The Hollow Years : France in the 1930s. By (author) Eugen Joseph Weber. Close X. Learn about new offers and get more deals by joining our newsletter.

The Hollow Years: France in the 1930s (1994). Community Pages are not affiliated with, or endorsed by, anyone associated with the topic.

The Hollow Years was written by and Eugen Weber. The Hollow Years mentions 1 serial killers including Eugen Weidmann. The author Eugen Weber has 1 book(s) listed on Killer. Cloud used for the purpose of documenting facts about Serial Killers listed in our database. The 352 page book was published by W. Norton & Company in 1996 (originally in 1995) with an ISBN 10 of 0393314790. This book mentions 1 Serial Killers: Eugen Weidmann 6 Victims during 1 Year.

Comments to eBook The Hollow Years
Rainshaper
In an attempt to provide context to the French military collapse in 1940, historian Eugen Weber’s The Hollow Years: France in the 1930s takes readers on a tour of the Third Republic’s socio-economic and political landscapes in the decade before the Second World War. Histories like this one tend to be deterministic and forensic in nature, looking for symptoms that led to the demise of a great power, rather than really looking at it as it was perceived at the time. As a result, this approach tends to focus on the negative and often fails to note positive or contradictory trends. Weber’s book falls into this rut, emphasizes France’s flaws while hardly noting anything that went right. At times, I felt like he was describing some failed state like Somalia, not one of the major powers of the Twentieth Century. That is not to say that this is a bad book; far from it, Weber knows his subject well and touches on many issues that get short shrift elsewhere. Overall, The Hollow Years is an important history for the context it provides, but the approach taken means that the reader will only hear the sound of one hand clapping.

The Hollow Years is divided into ten chapters that are arranged thematically, rather than chronologically. In the opening chapter, Weber describes how a sharp drop in births, combined with increased post-war pacifism deprived France of its military vigor. He also identifies a decline in patriotic attitudes due to government financial decisions, which led to a feeling of “economic betrayal.” The second chapter describes this “betrayal,” noting how the French Government defended the Franc at all costs, which resulted in consumer prices tripling. He also states that he French Government wanted to avoid public debts so it steered clear of deficit spending, which he appears to criticize; yet avoiding debt during the Depression Years sounds like good fiscal policy, not a mistake. As for patriotism, how do you measure that in any country at any time? People can say whatever they want about love of country in peacetime, but the only time you know for sure is when bullets are flying. Weber throws all sorts of quotes from all sorts of people into the mix, any without introduction, to demonstrate his points, but I don’t think much of this. Future historians might well quote Donald Trump or some obscure bloggers to make claims about current attitudes, but that doesn’t make it a national trend.

In other chapters, Weber describes how the French blamed foreigners for their problems. Many despised America as a culture-less society and Weber produces anti-globalization thinking, circa 1931, to make his point. He notes that the French General Staff recognized that war with Germany was increasingly likely, but most of the population refused to see the threat. French politicians signed ridiculous treaties such as the Kellog-Briand Pact, hoping that would suffice. Yet when faced with Hitler’s initial aggressive moves, Socialist politician Leon Blum shied away from force and sought compromise. Yet Weber fails to mention that the U.S. and British Governments also placed excessive faith in diplomacy to stop aggression and also attempted to placate Hitler and later the Japanese, which means French mistakes were not unique. Yet Weber persists, saying “France wanted peace and feared war” – wasn’t the same true in Washington, DC and London?

Weber pushes the idea that France in the 1930s was still primarily a backward, agrarian society, not yet ready for the industrial realism of the Twentieth Century. This is poppycock. France was a leading technology innovator beginning in the late Nineteenth Century and made important contributions to developments in aviation, communications, medicine, transportation and the military (including tanks). He describes French military procurement as “medieval” and French industry as backward (..no typewriters in some factories), yet France had better tanks in 1940 than either Germany or the UK.

Weber sees the French polity as hopelessly divided over politics (left vs right) and religion (secular vs Catholic Church), which prevented a unified front against external threats. He looks upon the Leftist Popular Front favorably, although it clearly didn’t last long or accomplish much. Chapter seven is one long attack on the Catholic Church in France, despite the fact that Weber says the church was fiercely patriotic. However, Weber says the Church was identified with the right and was later too chummy with the Vichy Regime, ergo it was bad, which exposes his heavy-handed determinism. By the end of the book, Weber presents a French army that is terrified of defended its own territory and a demoralized, divided population that only cares about its creature comforts. Yet Weber does not mention one word about France’s colonial conflicts, such as the Rif War (1920-26) in North Africa or other operations, which demonstrate a tough, aggressive Third Republic that was willing to ruthlessly crush opponents.

As far as it goes, The Hollow Years offers some useful insights but I would hardly call it a well-organized history of pre-war France. Weber’s Bric-a-brac approach is interesting at times but often annoying and frivolous, flitting between diverse topics such as the introduction of the Orangina soft drink and Lacoste tennis shirts, back to politics, then back to whatever else strikes his fancy. At one point, Weber spent a couple paragraphs informing the reader that Carmelite nuns did not wear underwear or wash regularly, which seemed completely inappropriate. At times, this book has tortured passages and Weber seemed to enjoy kicking the Catholic Church in the ribs, but ignored how Communists contributed to France’s military defeat in 1940. Overall, this book fails to deliver an in-depth or unbiased portrayal of France in the 1930s and essentially characterizes the Third Republic as a dysfunctional entity doomed to fail by its own internal flaws. This assessment is too broad-brushed and contains a whiff of Marxist ‘capitalism-is-corrupt-and-doomed’ kind of thinking. For all its problems, the French people enjoyed a good standard of living in the 1930s and their government was not running any gulags or committing murders in secret, as was occurring the Soviet Union.
Morad
'The Hollow Years' was an unsatisfying, yet compelling read. Eugen Weber offers his readers a truly kaleidoscopical view of what France (partly) was in the 1930's. Each chapter centers a baffling amount of facts around themes as society, religion, morality, agriculture, demographics, the highs and lows of the French economy, and last but not least French politics. After having finished reading, the reader has digested such an amount of data that one wonders how Eugen Weber could have possibly called this book 'The hollow years'.
Weber's book contains excellent passages. The first chapter, in which Weber describes the widespread sentiment against war is very well written. The issues of religious life, emerging leisure and vacation, and the emancipation of French women are well worked out. Yet, over the whole, Weber has not been able to free himself from the weight of the primary (and secondary) sources stacked (in amazing quantity) in the footnotes. We read facts, hardly interpretations. We get information, but little overview. The book develops no grand, overarching themes. The image of France stays very diffuse. Fittingly, the book does not end on a conclusion.
The author's choice to solely focus on facts, not trends, results in the incomprehensible omission of cardinal elements of what France (also) was in the 1930's:
- Despite the eye-popping blue on the 1930 world-maps, Weber entirely ignores the French domination of Viet-Nam, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Syria, Madagascar and enormous parts of Africa. The Colonial Exposition (1930), which marks the apogee of French empire and attracted millions of visitors is left virtually untreated.
- During the 1930's, the French Communist Party became the most important West-European Communist Party and a leading force in French politics. We do not read anything about the roots of this emergence, nor the importance of communists within French political life.
- After 15 years of division, 1936 saw the merger of the two most important French trade unions: the CGT of the socialist Leon Jouhaux (Nobel Peace prize 1951) and the communist-oriented CGTU, led by Benoit Frachon. Together, they fought for the 40-hour work week and controlled an enormous block of voters, but are absent in the Hollow Years.
Moreover, the book is drenched with a sustained and often irritating antipathy towards virtually all leading French politicians, diplomats and armymen. Weber does not treat France kindly at all. The author allows himself to make patronizing comments towards the behavior of leading politicians on numerous occasions. The extreme negativity of the tone makes the reader constantly want to question the arguments which are put forward. As such, reading Hollow Years was a rather sharpening intellectual experience.
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