The Road to Vichy (1942)


Inscribed by French Author and Philosopher Yves Simon,
"The Philosopher of the Fighting French"

Simon, Yves R. The Road to Vichy. 1918-1938. New York: Sheed & Ward, 1942.

Octavo. Hardcover. 1st Edition.

First edition of Yves Simon's powerful philosophical history and analysis of the route France took toward embracing fascism through the Vichy, inscribed: "To Helen R. Fairbanks. Yves Simon," and additionally signed by translator James Corbett, in the original dust jacket. French philosopher Yves Simon was known for his fervent embrace of democracy during World War II. After accepting an appointment as a visiting professor at Notre Dame in 1938, he found himself trapped at the university for the duration of the war. He used that time to advocate for an end to fascism. According to Notre Dame, Simon was praised in a leaflet dropped a day before the Allied invasion for "keeping alive the light of the French cause in the United States." This commitment earned him the moniker of "the philosopher of the Fighting French."  "The Road to Vichy is a translation of a manuscript Simon completed in French in 1941. It chronicles the decline of France's will to resist the threat of Hitler's Germany. What distinguishes the study is Simon's extraordinary capacity for disinterested judgment of the thinkers and actors, political and intellectual, left and right, Catholic and secular, who together created the climate insuring France's defeat by the Germans in 1941" (Journal of Politics). "The recent history of Europe offers rich material to the writer of tragedy. The disasters that we have already experienced and those that menace us appear avoidable when we consider their beginnings of 25 years ago... Prof. Simon gives vivid expression to this tragic character in his account of the confusing and blinding consequences of the fears and hatreds of the French middle class" (Review of Politics).   The woman to whom this copy is inscribed, Helen Fairbanks, was a nonfiction author. Old price on inscription page. Shelf number on front pastedown. Book fine, rare dust jacket extremely good with a bit of wear to extremities and faint dampstaining and a bit of toning to spine. A rare inscribed copy.

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