French Conference Brings International Scholars Together in Paris to Discuss Many Aspects of Churchill’s Career
Churchill authorities from around the world gathered in the French capital for an international conference held 23–25 September at the University of Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV) and at the Invalides War Museum. The conference was organised by Paris-Sorbonne in association with the Musée de l’Armée and the Charles de Gaulle Foundation, which hosted a major exhibition at the Musée de l’Armée on “Churchill – de Gaulle” earlier this year. Professor Antoine Capet, Emeritus Professor of British Studies at the University of Rouen and Professor Claire Charlot, of Paris-Sorbonne University, served as Convenors.
François Kersuady, author of Churchill and de Gaulle, delivered the Keynote Speech on “Churchill and France.” Speakers at the first full panel of the conference addressed issues connected with the First World War. John H. Maurer, of the US Naval War College, spoke about “Churchill and the Challenge from Imperial Germany.” John Young, of the University of Nottingham, discussed “Churchill and the July Crisis of 1914,” and Christopher Bell, of Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, talked about “Churchill and the Dardanelles,” the subject of his next book.
Other contributors at the conference spoke about “Churchill at War on the Nile,” James W. Muller; “Winston Churchill and the Golden Age of Journalism,” Richard Toye; “Winston Churchill, Appeasement, and the Origins of the Second World War,” B.J.C. McKercher; “What Churchill and de Gaulle Learned from the Great War,” Will Morrisey; “Winston Churchill and the End of Empire,” Philip Murphy; and “Winston Churchill as Seen by Isaiah Berlin,” Alexis Butin.
Plans are in development to compile all of the papers in a single book.
Photo above: Gathering at Les Invalides from left to right: Will Morrisey, Philip Murphy, John Charmley, James W. Muller, John Maurer, Christopher Bell, and Richard Toye.
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Welcome to the finale of our series “Work Hard – Play Hard: Churchill and His Hobbies.” Did you know Churchill loved to fly? Less than a decade after the Wright brothers first soared, he began taking lessons. His enthusiasm amazed even his instructors. He flew several times per day, finding true peace when airborn. “I have lived entirely in the moment, with no care for all these tiresome party politics.” But his friends and family were terrified. Early aviation was extremely dangerous, as he soon realized. “I have been naughty today about flying” he confessed. When Clementine had a new baby, he knew it was time to stop. “I will not fly any more, until at any rate you have recovered from your kitten.” The First World War kept him grounded. But when it ended, he eagerly resumed his lessons. Finally, after a wild crash landing, he gave it up. Sadly, he never earned his pilot’s license. But, as First Lord of the Admiralty, his early passion for flying gave birth to the Royal Naval Air Service. This helped form the Royal Air Force, to whom we owe so much. The mighty RAF still soars to this day, thanks in part to Churchill. We hope you enjoyed this series, and that you, like Churchill, get some leisure time this weekend. … See MoreSee Less
The International Churchill Society (ICS), founded in 1968 shortly after Churchill's death, is the world’s preeminent member organisation dedicated to preserving the historic legacy of Sir Winston Churchill.
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