PARIS AFTER WORLD WAR I
Musicians ought to cure music of its convolutions, its dodges and its tricks, and force it as far as possible to keep in front of the listener. JEAN COCTEAU
Except in terms of the calendar, the twentieth century was not born until after the 1918 victory of the Allies, for only then was it apparent that many of the basic premises of nineteenth-century life had disappeared. Before the war much of Europe had been ruled by kings and aristocrats, but after 1918 most of the monarchs were deposed and sent into exile. The founding of democratic systems of government was not easily accomplished, and the transition period was difficult. The most drastic of these social upheavals took place in Russia; but Germany, Austria, Italy, and many of the central European countries, once a part of the Austro-Hungarian empire, were faced with the problem of learning to govern themselves. It was a time of confusion, but there was general optimism too, for everyone felt the war had not been fought in vain and the world had been saved for democracy.
France, having escaped the necessity of changing her form of government, recovered rather rapidly. Paris quickly regained its importance as an international art center, and