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Alfred Dreyfus : Man, Milieu, Mentality and Midrash - Norman Simms

Alfred Dreyfus

Man, Milieu, Mentality and Midrash

Hardcover Published: 1st December 2011
ISBN: 9781936235391
Number Of Pages: 414

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This groundbreaking book focuses on Alfred Dreyfus the man, with emphasis placed on his own writings, including his recently published prison workbooks and his letters to his wife Lucie. Through close reading of these documents, a much more sensitive, intellectual and Jewish man is revealed than was previously suspected. He and Lucie, through their family connections and mutual loyalty, were interested in and supported the artistic, scientific, philosophical and historical movements that formed their Parisian milieu. But as an Alsatian Jew, Alfred was also critical of many aspects of technological and ideological developments, making his mentality one of scepticism as well as idealism. Norman Simms addresses the way Dreyfus perceived the world, challenged many of its assumptions and contextualised it in the style of a rabbinical midrash, a process that created what Alfred called a "phantasmagoria" of the Affair that bears his name, and also interprets the man, his milieu and his mentality in the style of a midrash, a creative, transformative reading.

Industry Reviews

"This is a remarkable book and sheds light on a Dreyfus that I and certainly many others did not know."--Dr. Murray Kaplan
"Prof. Simms's forte is, of course, the manner in which he "midrashes" Dreyfus's notebooks from Devil's Island. Drawing from the rabbinical technique of analysis, Simms connects it with the kind of hallucination, or phantasmagoria (those were the years of Georges Melies), that was experienced by Dreyfus, while he also notes, after Gabriel Tarde, what an "interpsychic" experience the Affair was since both sides imitated each other in utter confusion....Simms tries, in this first volume of a series of three, to recapture the man as he emerged from the Affair. He does so considerately and effectively."--Prof. Norbert Col, Universite de Bretagne-Sud, France

ISBN: 9781936235391
ISBN-10: 1936235390
Series: Reference Library of Jewish Intellectual History
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 414
Published: 1st December 2011
Publisher: Academic Studies Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.6  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.64

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