Bertrand de Jouvenel
French politician
Bertrand de Jouvenel
Bertrand de Jouvenel des Ursins, usually known only as Bertrand de Jouvenel was a French philosopher, political economist, and futurist.
Biography
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    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 1987
    Age 83
    Died on March 1, 1987.
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  • 1983
    Age 79
    De Jouvenel sued in 1983, claiming nine counts of libel, two of which the court upheld.
    More Details Hide Details However, Sternhell was required neither to publish a retraction, nor to strike any passages from future printings of his book.
  • FORTIES
  • 1947
    Age 43
    Jouvenel's mother passionately supported Czechoslovakian independence, and so he began his career as a private secretary to Edvard Beneš, Czechoslovakia's first prime minister. In 1947, along with Friedrich Hayek, Jacques Rueff, and Milton Friedman, he founded the Mont Pelerin Society.
    More Details Hide Details Later in life, de Jouvenel established the Futuribles International in Paris. Jouvenel was among the very few French intellectuals to pay respectful attention to the economic theory and welfare economics that emerged during the first half of the 20th century in Austria, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States. This understanding of economics is shown by his The Ethics of Redistribution. Dennis Hale of Boston College has co-edited two volumes of essays by Jouvenel. Zeev Sternhell published a book, Ni Droite, ni gauche ("Neither Right nor Left"), accusing De Jouvenel of having had fascist sympathies in the 1930s and 1940s.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1938
    Age 34
    That same year he joined Jacques Doriot's Parti populaire français (PPF). He became the editor in chief of its journal L'Émancipation nationale (National Emancipation), wherein he supported fascism. He broke with the PPF in 1938 when Doriot supported the Munich Agreement.
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  • 1936
    Age 32
    In February 1936 he interviewed Adolf Hitler for the journal Paris-Midi, for which he was criticised for being too friendly to the dictator.
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  • 1935
    Age 31
    He began a paper with Pierre Andreu called La Lutte des jeunes (The Struggle of the Young) while at the same time contributing to the right wing paper Gringoire, for which he covered the 1935 Nuremberg Congress in Germany where the infamous Nuremberg Laws were passed.
    More Details Hide Details He began frequenting royalist and nationalist circles, where he met Henri de Man and Pierre Drieu la Rochelle. He was in favour of Franco-German rapprochement and created the "Cercle du grand pavois", which supported the Comité France–Allemagne (Franco-German Committee). Here he became friends with Otto Abetz, the future German ambassador to Paris during the occupation.
  • 1934
    Age 30
    However, that same year, Jouvenel was impressed by the riot of the antiparliamentary leagues that occurred on 6 February 1934, became disillusioned with traditional political parties and left the Radical Party.
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    In his memoirs, The Invisible Writing, Arthur Koestler recalled that in 1934, Jouvenel was among a small number of French intellectuals who promised moral and financial support to the newly established Institut pour l'Étude du Fascisme, a supposedly self-financing enterprise of the Popular Front.
    More Details Hide Details Other personalities to offer support were Professor Langevin, the Joliot-Curies, André Malraux, etc.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1930
    Age 26
    From 1930 to 1934, Jouvenel had an affair with the American war correspondent Martha Gellhorn.
    More Details Hide Details They would have married had his wife agreed to a divorce.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1920
    Age 16
    In 1920, when he was a mere 16, Bertrand began an affair with his stepmother, who was then in her late 40s.
    More Details Hide Details The affair ended Colette's marriage and caused a scandal. It lasted until 1924. Some believe Bertrand to be the role model for the title character in Colette's novel Chéri, but in fact she had published about half the book, in serial form, before she and her stepson met for the first time, in the spring of 1920. In the 1930s, he participated in the Cahiers Bleus, the review of Georges Valois' Republican Syndicalist Party.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1912
    Age 8
    Henri divorced Sarah in 1912 to become the second husband of French writer Colette.
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  • 1903
    Born
    Born on October 31, 1903.
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