Asked recently whether he thought Brexit was a pivotal moment in European history, the writer Alain Finkielkraut responded: “In order to put an end to the distinction — judged potentially genocidal — between an ‘us’ and a ‘them’, the European Union has sedulously drained Europe of all content. It has replaced civilization with values, it has dissolved identity in rights, norms and procedures. The English have said “no” to these developments: we [the French] don’t need to emulate them, but seize the occasion of Brexit to reconstruct the European Union.” Continue reading “Europe’s Auto-Immunity”
This interview appeared originally in Le Monde on 23rd October, 2013, on the publication of Alain Finkielkraut’s book, L’Identité malheureuse — The Unhappy Identity. It typifies the then attitude of much of the official French media to the breaking of received taboos. Now, two years later, and under the weight of subsequent catastrophic events such as Charlie Hebdo and the migration crisis, the first hairline cracks in the media front are coming into view. However, to all appearances, Le Monde remains today as staunchly bien-pensant as before.
The tone of the article appears ironic more or less throughout; and the final paragraph is characteristically moralizing. Le Figaro, on the other hand, seems to be taking a more balanced view of political and social issues as Europe enters what many observers regard as some kind of endgame.