by François Fontan

Towards a Humanist Nationalism

Avec autorisation et copyright de Jean-Louis Veyrac

"For the youth the world over, that they may reject false, reactionary nationalism along with false, cosmopolitan socialism. For the youth of Occitania, so that for the first time in 700 years, they dare to be themselves."

"Speech is not the expression of mankind, it is mankind. Speech is not the evidence of human relationships, it makes them. Speech is the exact measure of mankind"

J. CONILH ("Esprit")

"If there exists an historical logic valid for the evolution of the class system and its conflicts, there is also an historical logic valid for the development and the awakening of all nations."

R. MISRAHI ("Les Temps Modernes")

"Socialism can no longer be separated from life, nor can it be separated from the nation."


"There is no such thing as abstract Marxism, for Marxism only exists in tangible form. What we call tangible Marxism, is the Marxism that has taken a national form".




Despite a distribution solely assured by a few militants, the first edition of "Ethnism" which appeared in 1961, has been out of print for several years.

In the meantime, the national question has become a current political issue in the French State and some left-wing movements have adopted an open attitude towards these problems. However, this attitude remains opportunistic as it is accompanied by an evasion of the question in all discussions on a national level.

This second edition is almost identical to the first. Only the chapter concerning "Ideologies and Nations" has been revised, in order to take into account the events having occurred over the last 15 years.

Toulouse, February 1975


Right-wing forces have so far confined themselves to a non-scientific nationalism or, to be more precise, a sentimental and narrow-minded patriotism, which has led them to commit the worst imperialistic aberrations, to the detriment of the nation's true interests.

Left-wing forces, unfortunately obsessed by class problems, have not studied problems of nations for many years; the first scientific approach to these matters, initiated by Stalin, is applied more and more rarely because it is confused, inapplicable and for a large part, false.

In the meantime, the history of the world marches on increasingly rapidly and is showing us that we are in an era of nationalism more than ever before.

Initially, the fundamental political problem appeared to be that of dictatorship versus democracy, followed by that of capitalism versus socialism. It would now appear that the foremost choice is between imperialism and internationalism, whatever may think the supporters of battles of words, to be likened to retarded dogmatics and mythologists.

In April 1951, Albert Memmi wrote in "Les Temps Modernes" : "All of this has resulted in a certain embarrassment on behalf of the socialists in their attitude towards nationalism, a wavering in the working class parties' ideology. The reserve shown by journalists and left-wing essayists in regard to this problem is telling. They envisage it as little as possible - neither daring to condemn it nor approve it; they do not know how or whether indeed they wish to integrate it and apply it to their understanding of the historical future. In a word, the present left is disorientated by the idea of nationalism".

This book has been written with the intention of presenting an objective study and a rational solution to the problem, within the framework of a global scientific humanism.

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