3.00 FYI France: Ejournal and archive

by Jack Kessler, kessler@well.sf.ca.us

July 15, 2005 issue. This file presents an archive copy of the issue of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which was distributed via email on July 15, 2005.

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Versions of the following have appeared online regularly, since 1992, as a feature of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which is distributed for free via email every month except August. Ejournal subscriptions may be obtained via email request to: kessler@well.sf.ca.us

Here this file is one of a number made available -- hopefully attractively, all in one place, and relevant to libraries and online digital information work in France and Europe -- as part of FYI France (sm)(tm), an online service to which anyone can subscribe for 12 months by postal mailing a check for US $45, payable to Jack Kessler, to PO Box 460668, San Francisco, California, USA 94146 (site licenses also are available): please write your email address on the front of your check. And you can pay via PayPal, on the FYI France homepage:


Please email suggestions for improvements to me at kessler@well.sf.ca.us


Summer reading...


And interesting items for The Collection... their omission now to be much-regretted later on, as this writer's career progresses, particularly if his political program succeeds this Fall and his political star continues to soar thereafter, and even if not...

** Dominique de Villepin ** : he is young (51), he writes well, and he writes interesting things, and qua author or prime minister he will have much to say about many things going forward -- among them digital libraries, and libraries generally, and education, and the Internet, in France and in other places. Whether one is a political fan of his or a foe, then -- and both Stanley Hoffmann and Régis Debray say they like his writing --

-- Villepin has a lifelong and interesting personal connection with the Maghreb and the Third World -- "born in Rabat, raised in Latin America", as the bios put it...


-- as I said, both Stanley Hoffmann and Régis Debray... plus Carlos Fuentes & Susan Sontag & Norman Mailer & Mario Vargas Llosa & several others, here. Many people everywhere were very impressed by Villepin's conduct and eloquence at the UN "Iraq Weapons" hearings, which may account for this particular book, and there now seems to be even more to Villepin than just that single occasion in the sun.


-- The Separation of Church and State, à la française: perhaps very interesting reading for those of us in other cultures who face the same or similar problems now.


-- Villepin and Jack Straw... now _there_ is a pair...


-- international relations writing -- but "requin" translates loosely as "shark", "mouette" as "seagull", so there also has been much fun had in the French presse, over which current Paris politicians fit which label. The Bebette Show used to portray a previous Premier Ministre as a pelican: Balladur... "On dit 'Izmir'..."


-- a "meditation" upon French politics, in the classical style -- wonderful writing, cascading imagery, pensive and deliberate analysis of the good & the bad & the really ugly & the truly magnificent, in the French political character, all by the person who now has the key job of making things happen, there -- very enjoyable reading.


-- another wonderfully-written Villepin oeuvre: this time about a childhood favorite, he says -- Bonaparte's "one hundred days" return from Elba and tortured attempt to recapture and reposition the French ship-of-state "naufrage", before Waterloo and St. Helena hit. Upon Villepin's appointment as prime minister, Le Tout Paris, and the rest, immediately nicknamed his government, "Les Cent-jours de Villepin"... Indispensable reading for anyone else whose childhood fascinations likewise included Napoleon, particularly if Emil Ludwig was all that was available back then. Also an interesting "meditation" upon the general difficulties of selecting & motivating & supervising high-ranking people: Bonaparte had a hard time of that, his second time around -- Villepin faces the challenge himself, now.


-- and "on poetry", by the prime minister... Poetry!? Not too many prime ministers, anywhere or anytime, or any who have aspired to become prime ministers, have thought about much less written about poetry. (Lincoln did: someone might tell Villepin that.) Elegiac tone -- it's an elegy... -- but relaxing and, again, very interesting reading.


Homme du destin? Perhaps not yet... But certainly person of the hour, at least, in France now... See also Fabius & Sarkozy & Jospin & Lang & very many others, still, also Villiers & Le Pen, add Emmanuelli & Bové & probably several more... But Villepin is off & running. And he writes interesting things, and he writes them well.

Bonnes vacances.






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Last update: July 16, 2008