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Order of the Day

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[5] [6]COMMENT: L’Or­dre du Jour (“The Order of the Day” in Eng­lish) has won a top lit­er­ary prize in France and will soon be pub­lished in Eng­lish.  . . . . ‘L’Or­dre du Jour’ [offi­cial­ly a nov­el] is based on his­tor­i­cal doc­u­ments and pho­tographs. It opens with a friend­ly meet­ing in 1933 between Hitler and 24 major fig­ures in Ger­man indus­try and finance, includ­ing brands like Bay­er and Allianz that are famil­iar today. ‘They are here beside us, among us,’ Mr. Vuil­lard writes. ‘They are our cars, our wash­ing machines, our house­hold goods, our radio-alarms, our home­own­er’s insur­ance, our watch bat­ter­ies. They are here, there and every­where, as all sorts of things. Our dai­ly life is theirs.’  Mr. Vuil­lard, a 49-year-old film­mak­er and the author of sev­er­al . . . nov­els, said by tele­phone that he had been inspired by Mon­tesquieu’s warn­ing that the con­cen­tra­tion of pow­er and mon­ey in the hands of a few was ‘dan­ger­ous for every­body.’ . . .”

Echo­ing Mon­tesquieu’s sen­ti­ment [7], we not­ed on May 23rd of 1980 [8] that what hap­pened in Ger­many in the 1920’s and 1930’s [9] was under­way in the Unit­ed States.

“Eric Vuil­lard Wins the Goncourt Prize” by Annal­isa Quinn; [10]The New York Times; 11/8/2017. [10]

 France’s most pres­ti­gious lit­er­ary prize, the Prix Goncourt, has been award­ed to “L’Or­dre du Jour,” by Eric Vuil­lard, a his­tor­i­cal work about shady busi­ness deal­ings behind the Nazi annex­a­tion of Aus­tria in 1938.

The book, pub­lished by Actes Sud and set to be trans­lat­ed in the Unit­ed States under the title “The Order of the Day,” was hon­ored on Mon­day in a cer­e­mo­ny at the Paris restau­rant Drouant. . . .

. . . . “L’Or­dre du Jour” is based on his­tor­i­cal doc­u­ments and pho­tographs. It opens with a friend­ly meet­ing in 1933 between Hitler and 24 major fig­ures in Ger­man indus­try and finance, includ­ing brands like Bay­er and Allianz that are famil­iar today.

 “They are here beside us, among us,” Mr. Vuil­lard writes. “They are our cars, our wash­ing machines, our house­hold goods, our radio-alarms, our home­own­er’s insur­ance, our watch bat­ter­ies. They are here, there and every­where, as all sorts of things. Our dai­ly life is theirs.”

 Mr. Vuil­lard, a 49-year-old film­mak­er and the author of sev­er­al . . . nov­els, said by tele­phone that he had been inspired by Mon­tesquieu’s warn­ing that the con­cen­tra­tion of pow­er and mon­ey in the hands of a few was “dan­ger­ous for every­body.”

The inde­pen­dent pub­lish­er Oth­er Press plans to pub­lish a trans­la­tion in the Unit­ed States next Novem­ber.