The General: Charles De Gaulle and the France He Saved

The General: Charles De Gaulle and the France He Saved

by Jonathan Fenby
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The General: Charles De Gaulle and the France He Saved by Jonathan Fenby


No leader of modern times was more uniquely patriotic than Charles de Gaulle. As founder and first president of the Fifth Republic, General de Gaulle saw himself as “carrying France on [his] shoulders.” 

In his twenties, he fought for France in the trenches and at the epic battle of Verdun. In the 1930s, he waged a lonely battle to enable France to better resist Hitler’s Germany. Thereafter, he twice rescued the nation from defeat and decline by extraordinary displays of leadership, political acumen, daring, and bluff, heading off civil war and leaving a heritage adopted by his successors of right and left.

 Le Général, as he became known from 1940 on, appeared as if he was carved from a single monumental block, but was in fact extremely complex, a man with deep personal feelings and recurrent mood swings, devoted to his family and often seeking reassurance from those around him. This is a magisterial, sweeping biography of one of the great leaders of the twentieth century and of the country with which he so identified himself. Written with terrific verve, narrative skill, and rigorous detail, the first major work on de Gaulle in fifteen years brings alive as never before the private man as well as the public leader through exhaustive research and analysis.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781616086008
Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing
Publication date: 07/01/2012
Pages: 736
Sales rank: 862,456
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 2.30(d)

About the Author

Jonathan Fenby is a former editor of the Observer and the South
China Morning Post, and is a former bureau chief in France for the
Economist and Reuters. He is the author of ten books, including the acclaimed biography Chiang Kai-Shek: China’s Generalissimo and the Nation He Lost and The Sinking of the Lancastria, which tells the story of the greatest disaster in British naval history. He was made a commander of the British Empire and a knight of the French
Order of Merit for services to journalism. He lives in London.

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The General: Charles De Gaulle and the France He Saved 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
fivekids More than 1 year ago
I am an avid reader of all things to do with WW2, but until this book I never really knew much about DeGualle. The author does a fantastic job of presenting this sometimes enigmatic figure and making him and his talents and foibles very human and understandable. Until this book DeGualle had always been presented as a figure who just sort of popped up out of the ground in 1940 and was a thorn in the side of the Allied high command for the rest of the war. He was in fact anything but. Yes he had a personal agenda, but at the heart of this agenda was a deep love for France and a belief in its greatness. This love and belief carried on after the war through his time as President. One aside that I will offer is that with the amount of bickering among the Allies that this book mentions it is a wonder that they were able to focus on the defeat of Germany at all and almost a miracle they did so. This is a long book, but well worth the effort.
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