By Revilo P. Oliver
From a speech via Dr. Revilo P. Oliver,
University of Illinois Professor of the Classics,
in March, 1959, prior to the
DAUGHTERS OF the yank REVOLUTION
Annual Illinois kingdom Convention
Supplementary notes are supplied to document
and, in a couple of cases, to extend and explain
statements made within the speech on March 12, 1959.
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Additional resources for All America Must Know the Terror that Is Upon Us
The Communists' presidential candidate also denounced M. Seguin's 'jobs fast food' (sic). The French have never gone in very much for world travel, Jet alone living abroad. There has been no French emigration to the United States to compare with that from other European countries, hence nothing to 'bridge' the old and new worlds. Until very recently, the main effect that tourism has had on the USA's image is through the presence of American visitors in France. The fact that French tourism is on the increase and travel to the USA is also aIa mode shows that there is much Jess fear of American might, and suggests that people are wanting to know what US society is really like.
This particularly applies to Americans portrayed in French fiction during the 187~1914 period. How is one to assess such conventional figures as 'the emancipated young woman' and the 'hard-pressed and a trifle eccentric business-man'? Where are we to place the 'innocents' of Eugene Labiche's best-selling Trente millions de Gladiator (1875) relative to Victorien Sardou's satire L'Oncle Sam of 1873 or to Jules Verne's portrayal of national characters, which was actually extremely pro-Anglo-Saxon?
Mr Reagan was merely a 'lame-duck President' whereas Mr Gorbachev seized the French imagination because of his reputation as a great reformer. Nevertheless, the 'model', if model there is, remains the United States. America, as a product of the French people's collective imagination, serves as a political and social barometer which helps reveal their different moods, passions and delusions. The turmoil of proand anti-American attitudes, the sudden shifts in public opinion, the ambiguity of certain judgements and the existence of cultural invariants, all reflect the turbulent evolution of postwar France in which 'modernisation' has been by turns Jacobin or liberal.