PIERRE DRIEU LA ROCHELLE: THE DOCTRINE OF ' fascisme francais '
Coggins, Patrick John
The French intellectual has always held a prominent position in determining France's future. He represents the experimental conscience embracing a moral ideal erected above a national, political and social framework. The intellectual equates the dilemma of man's present and future with that of his society. The role of the intellectual is to seek and assess the forces of change within his society, evaluating them on the basis of his' individual moral principles. Pierre Drieu La Rochelle was an intellectual who judged his society as morally, socially, and politically regressive, and advanced an alternative in a doctrine that envisioned, a new order--an age of renaissance--for himself, for France," and for Europe. Pierre Drieu La Rochelle called this alternative fascism. Drieu was one of the most original theoreticians of the doctrine, of French fascism. This study is devoted to the examination of this intellectual and this doctrine. The examination will discuss the environment of post-war France, Drieu's development within it,'and his assessment of it. It will also deal with the problem of why a man of letters, superior in intelligence and foresight, advanced a doctrine that would resolve in fascism the dilemmas of the individual, the nation, and European 'civilization. Fascism was the great experiment of the inter-war generation, of which Pierre Drieu La Rochelle was a spokesman.