This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. For more information, see our privacy statement

New Left Review 41, September-October 2006


Gregory Elliott on Michael Scott Christofferson, French Intellectuals Against the Left. Pathbreaking revisionist history of French liberalism’s ‘anti-totalitarian’ awakening.

GREGORY ELLIOTT

PARISIAN IMPOSTURES

A paradoxical consequence of the end of the Cold War in the peaceful implosion of ‘real socialism’ was a widespread restoration of confidence in the original ideological currency of the Free World. ‘Totalitarianism’ became the de facto gold standard of commentary on the Communist experience. Unsurprisingly, it was pervasive in Eastern Europe and the ex-ussr, where no less a figure than Mikhail Gorbachev (sometime General-Secretary of the cpsu, subsequently hawker for Pizza Hut) had recourse to it. Further West, it and its analogues (e.g. ‘ideocracy’) supplied the master-key of such signal interventions as Martin Malia’s The Soviet Tragedy (1994), François Furet’s Passing of an Illusion (1995), or Stéphane Courtois et al’s Black Book of Communism (1997).

Subscribe for just £36 and get free access to the archive
Please login on the left to read more or buy the article for £3

Username:

Gregory Elliott, ‘Parisian Impostures’, NLR 41: £3
Password:
 



If you want to create a new NLR account please register here

’My institution subscribes to NLR, why can't I access this article?’