In his major work on communism, the international bestseller The Passing of an Illusion, the eminent French historian François Furet devoted a lengthy footnote to German historian Ernst Nolte's interpretation of fascism. Nolte responded, a correspondence ensued, and the result was the remarkable exchange presented in this volume. Fascism and Communism offers readers the rare opportunity to witness and learn from a confrontation between two of the world's most distinguished historians over one of the most serious subjects of our time. Each from a different perspective, Furet and Nolte offer compelling arguments for the common genealogy of these two ideologies as well as reasons for the intellectual community's rejection of this explosive thesis throughout the twentieth century. This discussion leads to a deeper understanding of the nature of totalitarianism as well as the trajectory and interpretation of modern European history. François Furet (1927-97) was one of France's most respected historians. His books include The Passing of an Illusion: The Idea of Communism in the Twentieth Century and Revolutionary France, 1770-1880. Ernst Nolte is a leading German historian and the author of major works on fascism. Katherine Golsan, an associate professor of French at the University of the Pacific, is cotranslator of Tzvetan Todorov's Life in Common: An Essay in General Anthropology (Nebraska 2001). Tzvetan Todorov is the author of numerous works, including Facing the Extreme: Moral Life in the Concentration Camps.
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