Georges Clemenceau: A Political Biography

By David Robin Watson | Go to book overview

20

CONCLUSION

Clemenceau was first and foremost a political animal. But he was a many-sided man, with many different fields of interest. Politics was his profession, and his principal concern, but as a journalist he sought to be a man of letters in the widest sense, and attempted creative literature in various forms — short stories, descriptive pieces and moral essays, even a novel and a play. However unsuccessful this attempt, it is important that it was made. He also had a life-long interest in the arts, and was a close friend of the critic Gustave Geffroy and the painter Claude Monet. Many people paid tribute to his qualities as a Cicerone after he conducted them round special exhibitions or the permanent collections of the Louvre. 1 He never forgot his early scientific training, although during his lifetime science became a matter of professional specialization that made it quite impossible for the intelligent amateur to keep abreast of the latest research. Thus, if he seemed to some political associates to be an isolated figure, it was not because he was solitary, but because he did not devote his time entirely to politics, except in the special circumstances of the second ministry. He moved in other circles and had other interests. In his early life and middle age he moved in 'society' — not the high society of the aristocracy and haute bourgeoisie, which would not have accepted such a representative of republican and democratic ideas, but republican society which had its own salons, and the world of the opera, and fashionable theatres. But after his separation from his wife, and as he grew older, he moved more in intellectual, journalistic, and artistic circles, and spent his time with old and close friends. He was attractive to women, and had several

____________________
1
' B. Z. Szeps, My Life and History, pp. 137-40.

-397-

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Georges Clemenceau: A Political Biography
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Georges Clemenceau - A Political Biography *
  • Contents 5
  • Illustrations *
  • Acknowledgements 11
  • Part One - Childhood, Youth and the Commune I84i-1871 *
  • 1 - Childhood and Youth 15
  • 2 - The Commune 34
  • Part Two - The Radical Attack I87i-1889 *
  • 3 - Challenger from the Left 59
  • 4 - Clemenceau versus Ferry 81
  • 5 - Boulangism 101
  • Part Three - Defeat and Resurgence I889-1906 *
  • 6 - Panama 117
  • 7 - The Dreyfus Affair 138
  • Part Four - The First Ministry I906-1909 *
  • 8 - Minister of the Interior 167
  • 9 - Clemenceau as Premier 183
  • 10 - Clemenceau as Strike-Breaker 200
  • 11 - Foreign Policy 215
  • Part Five - Opposition I909-1917 *
  • 12 - In Opposition before the War 237
  • 13 - Opposition in Wartime 249
  • Part Six - Pere-La-Victoire I9i7-1918 *
  • 14 - Second Ministry: Domestic Politics 275
  • 15 - Military Strategy 293
  • 16 - Russian Intervention and Victory 315
  • Part Seven - The Peace Settlement and after I9i8-1929 *
  • 17 - The Versailles Treaty 331
  • 18 - The Middle East and Russia 366
  • 19 - Domestic Politics and Last Years 380
  • Part Eight - Conclusion *
  • 20 - Conclusion 397
  • Appendices Sources and Bibliography Index *
  • Appendix I 411
  • Appendix II 414
  • Appendix III 416
  • Appendix IV 417
  • Appendix V 424
  • Appendix VI 428
  • Appendix VII 434
  • Sources and Bibliography 438
  • Index 455
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