Analyzing The Dreyfus Affair From 1894 To 1906

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The Dreyfus Affair was one of the most shocking political scandal, which took a long time

to resolve from 1894 to 1906. The affair was the biggest example of injustice in the history.

Even today the Dreyfus Affair suggests a lesson that concerns xenophobia, racial prejudice

and a blind nationalism. The scandal started with the arrest of Captain Alfred Dreyfus

wrongfully convicted of treason and it eventually divided the French nation into two: Anti-

Dreyfusards and Dreyfusards. Not only the affair divided France into two, it also awoke

authors and intellectuals and led them to display their thoughts on this matter to the

public. The Dreyfus Affair pushed France into the age of politically involved media. In 1894, …show more content…

Captain Dreyfus was one of the officers

who were tested by the French Military of War for search of the spy and suspicion of

treason. The inspectors who were monitoring every move of Dreyfus noticed his trembling

and nervousness, therefore convicted him of treason. In the book “L’affaire Dreyfus”,

Pierre Birnbaum states that the inspectors mentioned “He is cold, he shivers, an

incontestable sign of his culpability” (36). After the immediate deportation to the prison,

anti-Semitic judges found Dreyfus, the Alsatian Jew guilty and appointed him a life sentence

at the Devil’s isle. The Dreyfus Affair was finally resolved in 1906 after the grant of amnesty

of the French president and a letter of Dreyfus sent to the “Garde Des Sceaux” (Columbia

Electronic Encyclopedia). Before the Dreyfus Affair, anti-Semitism was least developed in

France out of all the other countries in Europe. As a matter of fact, France was the only

place where people sought political asylum from Russia in 1880s (Bredin, 32). The Dreyfus

Affair took place at an unfortunate time, where anti-Semitism was growing rapidly and …show more content…

The Affair brought the uprising of media and it was used to turn public’s opinion in their

own favor. There were much more Anti-Dreyfusards newspapers (La Croix, La Libre parole,

Le Pétrin, L’antijuif i.e) than Dreyfusard newspapers (Le Siècle, L’Aurore) (Bredin, 276).

When the government announced a Jewish officer was being suspected for high treason ,

anti-Semitic newspapers erupted with news portraying Dreyfus as a traitor, while the

Dreyfusard newspapers decided not to publish any news until the final verdict. On

December 22nd, 1884 after the jury pronounced the verdict finding him guilty, the

newspapers exploded with the news of the Jewish officer arrest. At that instant, everyone

believed that Dreyfus was guilty”from right to left, there is not one newspaper that defends

Dreyfus” (Bredin, 262). Ironically, a communiqué was published shortly after by German

chancellery stating that they “never had any connection with Captain Dreyfus”

(Paleiologue, 32).Following the German communiqué, the anti-Dreyfusard newspaper

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