DEL CASSÉ became foreign minister in June 1898 as the candidate of the parti colonial. ‘In the formation of the new ministry’, said La Quinzaine Coloniale, ‘it has constantly put forward his name and has supported him with all its sympathy and authority.’1 Delcassé’s arrival at the Quai d’Orsay coincided with a rise in imperial feeling in France as a whole. In 1889 Jules Ferry had complained that all his countrymen knew or cared about their empire was the belly dance. During the last decade of the nineteenth century, however, French overseas expansion ceased to be the preoccupation of a few enthusiasts and at last acquired popular, if not mass, support. Comparing the French public’s newly-discovered interest in its empire-builders with its apathy towards them in the 1880’s, the Bulletin du Comité del’ Afrique Française declared in 1899: ‘At that time the return of a Brazza was of concern only to an interested minority; today the return of a Galliéni or a Marchand excites the crowd’.2 The growth of public interest in the colonies was reflected in the growth of the groupe colonial in the Chamber.


Foreign Policy Foreign Affair Religious Order Foreign Minister Groupe Colonial 
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Copyright information

© Christopher Andrew 1968

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher Andrew
    • 1
  1. 1.CambridgeUSA

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