During the American Civil War, political ideology was the most important determinant of French journalistic attitudes. Conservatives usually supported the South while Liberals usually supported the North. Provincial newspapers, however, less consistently followed ideological patterns than their Parisian and big-city colleagues. Slavery was not a determinant of French attitudes, since all French were opposed to slavery; rather, both Conservatives and Liberals used the issue of slavery as a device to garner support. While Conservatives remained firm in believing that the South would prevail until the very end, Liberal journalists sometimes despaired of a Union triumph in the face of Northern military defeats.
About the Author
GEORGE M. BLACKBURN is Professor Emeritus of History at Central Michigan University.
Table of Contents
France in 1861
The 1860 Election and Secession
The Trent Affair
Changing Military Fortunes and Emancipation
The Cotton Crise
French Official Actions through Mediation
1863 and 1864
The End of the War