Resist or collaborate?

Resultado de imagem para The chéf of the Resistance Photo by Henri Cartier-Bresson/Magnum

The chéf of the Resistance in Vergt, Acquitaine, France (left) talks to a member of the FFI in 1944. Photo by Henri Cartier-Bresson/Magnum

The Nazis have occupied France. It’s easy to condemn the collaborators. But be honest: what would you really do?

Robert Gildea is professor of modern history at Worcester College, University of Oxford. His most recent book is Fighters in the Shadows: A New History of the French Resistance (2015).

A puncture can change your life. In Louis Malle’s film Lacombe, Lucien (1974), the young peasant Lucien is rejected by his former schoolteacher who runs the local resistance organisation he wishes to join and then, returning home by bicycle, gets a flat tire. Seeking help in a nearby farmhouse, he finds himself among a band of carousing militiamen, collaborators sworn to eradicate La Résistance. He denounces the teacher, becomes a local boss of the militia, and is finally shot by resistance fighters.

This much-quoted moment of chance is the starting point for the book Aurais-je été resistant ou bourreau? (2013) by literature professor and psychoanalyst Pierre Bayard, which translates as ‘Would I have been a resister or a collaborator?’ As historians, and indeed as citizens, we assume that we would have made the right decision during the Second World War, given what we know about its horrors. The myth developed by General Charles de Gaulle in 1944 – that the French overwhelmingly behaved patriotically, rallied behind his leadership, and liberated the country themselves – persuades us that we would most likely have resisted Nazi Germany. A myth, however, is designed to unify a people and legitimate its rulers, not to tell the truth. As a young lecturer at Oxford 35 years ago, I remember looking round my college’s governing body, composed overwhelmingly of conservative middle-aged men, and wondering what they would have done if Britain had been occupied by the Germans. I concluded that most of them would have collaborated.

Today, after the shocks of Brexit and the Trump election, and with Marine Le Pen still lurking in the wings, I now begin to understand how the French must have felt in 1940. They underwent a double collective trauma. First, their country, which had emerged triumphant in 1918 after four years in the trenches, succumbed in six weeks to a German Blitzkrieg. The government fell, to be replaced by another led by Marshal Philippe Pétain, the hero of Verdun in 1916, which immediately sued for an armistice. The northern half of the country was occupied by German forces, 1.5 million Frenchmen were taken to POW camps in Germany, the army was reduced to a peace-keeping Armistice Army of 100,000 – what the Allies had allowed Germany after 1918 – and a huge reparations bill was imposed. Second, dazed and demoralised politicians reconvened in the spa town of Vichy in the so-called Free Zone and handed full powers to Pétain to make a new, stronger constitution. Parliament was dismissed, the Republic that had stood since 1870 was abolished, and executive, legislative and judicial powers were vested in Pétain as head of state. A National Revolution was launched to regenerate France in preparation for the time it might recover its independence. Freemasons, communists and Jews, alleged to have dominated the Third Republic and stabbed France in the back, were pilloried as the ‘anti-France’, purged and persecuted. The ‘decadence’ said to have sapped France’s strength was dealt with by sending young people to the so-called ‘Chantiers de la jeunesse française’ (CJF), or glorified boy-scout camps. Married women were removed from public-sector jobs and sent back to the kitchen and bedroom; the author Benoîte Groult, then a 20-year-old writing in her diary, remarked: ‘of the sexes, we are the Jews’.

In such a situation of shock and bewilderment, it was not obvious what the French should do. Overwhelmingly, they were patriotic, but where did patriotism lie? Most took the view that France had been undermined and betrayed by forces that were not properly French. These should be excluded to restore France’s health and vigour, and the nation’s fortunes should be entrusted to a real military hero, Marshal Pétain. The Marshal met Hitler in October 1940 and shook hands with him, announcing that he was embarking on a strategy of collaboration. This was not necessarily all bad. Its purpose was to bring POWs home sooner, to make it easier to cross the demarcation line between the occupied and non-occupied zones and to reduce some of the financial and economic burdens inflicted by Germany, although in practice the Germans made few concessions. Many people thought that Pétain, while working ostensibly with the Germans, was playing a double game – in secret contact with the British in order to eventually bring France back into the war against Germany…

more…

https://aeon.co/essays/put-yourself-in-vichy-france-do-you-resist-or-collaborate

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France Est Fini

By Jim Kirwan

Liberty, Equality, Fraternity’ (in French ‘Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité’) is a tripartite motto in the form of a hendiatris, i.e. a phrase used for emphasis, in which three words are used to express one idea. The motto finds its origins in the French Revolution when it was first used in a speech from Robespierre on 5 December 1790 when dealing with the organisation of the National Guard.”

All of that is Dead & Gone now…

France has chosen to go quietly into the cold, dark night. Instead of rising up against the jihad and islamization of France, they have chosen to submit to the most brutal ideology on the face of the earth.

They voted for submission over freedom. France is finished.”

FRANCE SURRENDERS: Macron Pummels Le Pen

http://pamelageller.com/2017/05/france-surrenders-macron-pummels-le-pen.html/

Ironically the candidate chose the Louvre to make his acceptance speech ­ a global landmark that he will end up closing down ­ because he has no plans at all for anything, no experience whatsoever: And he will be the one that will bear the shabby coffin for the failed Republic of France…. And that funeral will also mark the end of any remaining Civilization in Europe.

Is this what will be in store for every other nation in the world today?

It will be if we don’t even start to defend ourselves!

kirwanstudios@outlook.com

– See more at: http://www.rense.com/general96/francefin.html#sthash.YJ1O89sp.dpuf

 

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What Jesus, Judas and Nutella can tell us about women’s bodies

Lucy McCormick in Triple Threat
‘A ludicrously charismatic presence’: Lucy McCormick in Triple Threat. Photograph: Tamsin Drury

It’s rare to see a truly avant garde performer – one so effortlessly boundary-busting that you can hardly believe your eyes and ears – who is also at home in the mainstream. It’s also rare when the performer is hilarious. But Lucy McCormick is one such artist. Her show Triple Threat (the theatrical term, I’m reliably informed, for a performance that involves singing, dancing and acting) has to be seen to be believed. In fact, I’m not quite sure I believe it even now.

The show started out on the queer circuit, where McCormick was known as part of the performance company Get in the Back of the Van, which describes itself as “playing with glory, endurance, artifice and the banal”. But despite its radical content, Triple Threat made its transition to the general audience without causing controversy. It was a huge hit at last year’s Edinburgh festival fringe, and is now coming to the end of a successful run at the Soho Theatre, in London. “I’ll shout So!” McCormick tells the audience at the start. “And you shout Ho!” All good, transgressive fun.

Triple Threat is McCormick’s retelling of the New Testament – which she feels, with some justification, has until now been lacking in “strong roles for women”. McCormick plays pretty much all the roles, Christ with particular relish. She is ably assisted by two scantily clad lovelies, who spend a lot of their time looking humiliated and resentful: which is, of course, extremely amusing, because that’s how people cast in such roles really ought to look, although these two only get away with it because they’re men.

Triple Threat has a certain amount in common with Jerry Springer: The Opera, the musical written by Richard Thomas and Stewart Lee. The show was widely condemned for its irreverence towards Christianity and its general profanity. One suspects Triple Threat hasn’t attracted similar disapprobation simply because it’s playing on small stages, with small budgets, and none of the people who would be horrified have realised it exists. Which is sad, because they’re exactly the sort of people who have the most to learn from seeing it.

McCormick is a ludicrously charismatic presence, singing, dancing and acting with prodigious power and skill. It’s her material as well – the satire, the gags, the intelligence, the insight, the complex, perfect pitch and tone. McCormick is absurdly talented.

She tackles gender roles by re-enacting the nativity from Christ’s point of view, slithering in a tight bodysuit through a cervical passage formed by her two-man Girl Squad’s arms – breasts and pubis casually coming in and out of view as if they were like any other parts of her body – which, of course, they clearly are, in the context McCormick has created.

Let’s just say that the surprises keep coming. The listings magazine Time Out described the show as “joyously depraved”. The three kings scene has the trio and some of the audience caked (due to budget constraints) in Gold Blend, frankfurters and meringue; and an extended snogging scene between Jesus and Judas somehow conspires to leave McCormick’s face slathered disgustingly with Nutella left over from the temptation of Christ in the desert.

Among the many power ballads lustily belted out with untampered lyrics fitting the Christ story perfectly, the enlistment of the Bryan Adams hit (Everything I Do) I Do It for You to communicate the crucifixion scene is particularly pleasing.

The doubting Thomas scene is the transgressive peak of the show, and features the investigation of all of the orifices of Jesus for proof that he is risen, not just the nail holes in his hands. By that point, however, the audience is merely delighted to discover that it can still be shocked. A bit. Although full “what the hell just happened?” astonishment does set in within minutes of stumbling dazed out of the theatre…

more…

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/apr/22/lucy-mccormick-triple-threat-jesus-judas-nutella-feminist-difficulty

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Beyond a Failing European Super State

Julian Rose, Contributor
Waking Times

This subject should be of interest to everyone, regardless of where you live. We are all affected by the unraveling of this behemoth called the European Union, just as we are by its continued presence. It is, after all, a work of mammon; yet masterfully disguised as a pan European socio-economic entente-cordiale.

It has its roots in the historical imperative of empire building and came into being as a direct extension of Hitler’s Nazi inspired goal of establishing a ‘Third Reich’.

The leading voice of the EU’s first version, the European Union Treaty of 1957, was a German named Walter Hallstein. He became the founder president of the Commission of the European Economic Community and one of the founding fathers of the European Union. His suitability for filling this role was based upon his earlier work as a senior attorney of the Nazi/IG Farben partnership. The line of continuity is direct.

However, the blueprint that lead to the formation of the European Union was first tabled at a meeting of the highly secretive Bilderberg group in Rome some four years earlier. The Bilderberg group, which meets annually to this day, is composed of elite bankers, industrialists, political high-flyers and royalty. It is hardly surprising that the notion of a European Super State should find favor with this assembly.

We are looking at the key individuals behind what became a self selecting, autocratic top-down hierarchy. A hierarchy whose decision making process would be entirely self contained. It was never, by any remotest stretch of the imagination, a ‘people’s movement’. Nor did it aspire to any form of ‘democracy’; but developed rapidly into a centrally based technocracy. A pyramid, whose top-end bureaucracy consists of an unelected cabal serving the interest of big business, multinational corporations and political power mongers interested in the wider control of humanity as a whole.

It is a major plank in the long desired elite vision of a ‘New World Order’.

Overt Monopoly

Hallstein himself stated in his book ‘Europe in the Making’: “The Commission is entrusted with what virtually amounts to a monopoly in taking the initiative in all matters affecting the Community. There are few exceptions to this general rule, but these ought to be removed at the earliest opportunity.”

He adds “As I see it, the Commission should eventually be empowered to take all measures necessary for the implementation of the Treaty on its own authority, without having to rely on special and specific approval by the Council of Ministers.”

Thus it has been and continues to be. But due to a fundamental belief and expertise in the powers of deception, it has carried some four hundred million European citizens along with it under the aegis of uniting independent nations behind what it has claimed to be ‘an economically beneficial harmonization of rules and regulations’.

A process which has led the European Union to become the largest trading block in the world. With the Commission as leader of a ‘Supranational’ authority, overseeing the ‘acquis communautaire’ (the great acquired rule book) under which all member nation states are bound.

‘Supranational’: please remember that this means ‘above national’ the ‘highest authority’ – that which  supersedes national law.

What an incredible feat! Millions and millions across the continent of Europe have come to passively accept the covert – and often overt – imposition of a dictatorship under the illusion that it is a benign force for good.
But such deception cannot prevail forever. Signs of dissent have been growing for decades. In 2001 the Irish voted ‘no’ to being party to the Nice Treaty. The news rocked Europe, causing the Commission to put the Irish government under enormous pressure to do a re-run and to embark on a massive propaganda exercise warning that the Irish economy would collapse unless it voted in favor of the Treaty. It duly conformed.

Further tremblings have grown in intensity since that time, and then, in June 2016, the infamous ‘Brexit’ was launched into reality. It shook the nation and it shook the federation – and the shock waves have not ceased to reverberate. With similar rebellions simmering on a number of fronts throughout the Union, cracks are opening up that can no longer be papered-over.

There are good reasons to be suspicious of the sincerity of the British government in genuinely freeing Britain from the chains that have bound it to the Union for the past forty four years. However that is the subject for another article.

Do We Have a Vision of the Future We Want?

Whatever the political reality actually is – one thing in particular is alarming the powers that be – people are becoming aware. Slowly at first, but week by week the process is gathering pace.

As a result, a large question now presents itself to all citizens of Europe and beyond: what shape do we want our collective futures to take?

Do we actually have a vision of the future we want? And if not, why not?…

more…

About the Author
Julian Rose is an early pioneer of UK organic farming, international activist and author. Contact Julian at www.julianrose.info to find out more. He is President of The International Coalition to Protect the Polish Countryside, and is the author of two books with some very powerful perspectives: Changing Course for Life and In Defence of Life.
This article first appeared on www.connorpost.com
This article (Beyond a Failing European Super State) was originally created and published by Julian Rose and is re-posted here with permission. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this copyright statement.
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Europe is on the Brink of Completely Banning Bee-Killing Insecticides

by Alex Pietrowski, Staff Writer, Waking Times

As the first North American bumble bee has been officially added to the list of endangered species in the U.S., the European government is making a move to prohibit the use of neonicotinoid insecticides, which are widely believed to be a major contributing factor to the rapid collapse of the world’s bee and pollinator insect populations.

The European commission (EC) has drafted regulations which would end the use of neonics, a family of agrichemicals which pose a ‘high acute risk to bees.’ As The Guardian reports:

“The EU imposed a temporary ban on the use of the three key neonicotinoids on some crops in 2013. However, the new proposals are for a complete ban on their use in fields, with the only exception being for plants entirely grown in greenhouses. The proposals could be voted on as soon as May and, if approved, would enter force within months.” [Source]

Other pesticides are also included in the ban, and for those who consider the loss of pollinator insects to be a most critical issue today, this is also good news.

“However, the European commission (EC) has decided to move towards implementing a complete ban now, based on risk assessments of the pesticides by the European Food Safety Authority (Efsa), published in 2016.

..the EC concluded that “high acute risks for bees” had been identified for “most crops” from imidacloprid and clothianidin, both made by Bayer. For thiamethoxam, made by Syngenta, the EC said the company’s evidence was “not sufficient to address the risks”.” [Source]

While agrichemical companies would like us to believe that more research is needed to disprove the presumption that these chemicals are of no harm to the environment and necessary to feeding the world, others insist we need to stop using them now.

“The science is catching up with the pesticide industry – the EU and UK government must call time on neonics. Going neonic-free puts farmers more in control of their land instead of having to defer to advice from pesticide companies.” ~Paul de Zylva, Friends of the Earth

Final Thoughts

One has to wonder when the reality will sink into American public and political consciousness that bees and pollinators are critical to our lives, our food supply and even our economy.

“As honey bees gather pollen and nectar for their survival, they pollinate crops such as apples, cranberries, melons and broccoli. Some crops, including blueberries and cherries, are 90-percent dependent on honey bee pollination; one crop, almonds, depends entirely on the honey bee for pollination at bloom time.

For many others, crop yield and quality would be greatly reduced without honey bee pollination. In fact, a 1999 Cornell University study documented that the contribution made by managed honey bees hired by U.S. crop growers to pollinate crops amounted to just over $14.6 billion.” ~American Beekeeping Federation

The new proposals could be voted on in coming months, and if passed implementation of this policy could begin as early as this year.

About the Author
Alex Pietrowski is an artist and writer concerned with preserving good health and the basic freedom to enjoy a healthy lifestyle. He is a staff writer for WakingTimes.com and Offgrid Outpost, a provider ofstorable food and emergency kits. Alex is an avid student of Yoga and life.
This article (Europe is on the Brink of Completely Banning Bee-Killing Insecticides) was originally created and published by Waking Times and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Alex Pietrowski and WakingTimes.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this copyright statement.
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Putin Blasts Euro-Western Culture of Pedophilia and Satanism

by Brendan D. Murphy, Guest, Waking Times

Recent events have sparked renewed interest in an explosive speech given by Vladimir Putin at the final plenary meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club On September 19, 2013, addressing a number of challenges faced by contemporary Russia. In doing so, he also took aim at the moral degradation creeping through Europe and the West, in a rare – by normal political standards – display of candour.

In highlighting “ideological-informational” challenges faced by Russia, Putin observed that military-political problems and general social conditions are worsening, with much of the world forgetting the value of basic human decency, before noting that “supporters of an extreme, western-style liberalism”are as far from reality as “proponents of fundamental conservatism who idealise pre-1917 Russia.”1

Obviously anticipating his message being heard by critical recipients, Putin exhorted – ostensibly at least – the attendees (or more likely the international community who would eventually receive the recordings and transcripts) to “break the habit of only listening to like-minded people,” while “angrily and even with hatred­ rejecting any other point of view from the outset.”2

Many so-called “liberal progressives” could benefit from such advice.


Putin focused on challenges to Russia’s identity in an international context, of both a foreign policy and moral flavour. Notice the allusion to Satanism which Putin knows full well has, for a long time, been quietly rotting the fabric of America at the core:

We see many of the Euro-Atlantic countries are actually rejecting their roots, including the Christian values that constitute the basis of Western civilisation. They are denying moral principles and all traditional identities: national, cultural, religious and even sexual. They are implementing policies that equate large families with same-sex partnerships, belief in God with the belief in Satan.(emphasis added)

There is probably something lost in translation here in this nugget, however, the fact remains this is an astonishing comment coming from a world leader, when what Westerners and Europeans are accustomed to is a combination of mere propaganda, rosy political rhetoric, and stock “manager speak” which typically reveals nothing (and obscures reality by design).

Putin wasn’t done though, adding:

The excesses of political correctness have reached the point where people are seriously talking about registering political parties whose aim is to promote paedophilia.(emphasis added)

Another bombshell that should reverberate in the numbed minds of “progressive” Europeans and fluoridated Westerners. How many other world leaders have spoken out about the insidious and increasingly widespread normalization and promotion of pedophilia? Did Obama order mass pedophile arrests? Did either Clinton? Did either of the Bushs do or say anything meaningful about the pedophilia epidemic? (No. Have you considered that they may be too heavily invested in keeping it quiet?)

 

Doubtless that Putin would applaud the efforts of President Trump in organizing for the arrest of some 1,500 pedophiles on American soil within a matter of weeks of arriving in the Whitehouse. Where were the “progressives” and “liberals” when that went down? Still crying about Hillary?

 

In late 2012 (with Obama still in office), Putin actually passed a controversial bill with emphatic support from the State Duma to ban US foster parents from adopting Russian children in a move that will simultaneously protect a number of them from being shunted into child trafficking operations while also tragically denying many orphans new families. America adopts more Russian children annually than any other nation.5

Putin explained “the country will not be responsible” for the abuse of Russian children at the hands of American pedophiles.6

Reportedly, the Russian premier has warned that the ban will remain until President Trump takes care of the sex trafficking epidemic and lives up to his promise to “drain the swamp” of pedophile Elites in Washington D.C. It appears likely that an elite pedophile network in D.C. uses adoption to enter children into child sex trafficking7 – hardly news considering the well known saturation of pedophiles within America’s political machinery.

Further addressing the worsening moral crisis, Putin offered criticism of the erosion of traditional religion and its moral foundations, and an implicit derision of “multiculturalism” and its less talked about insidious effects:

People in many European countries are embarrassed or afraid to talk about their religious affiliations. Holidays are abolished or even called something different; their essence is hidden away, as is their moral foundation. And people are aggressively trying to export this model all over the world. I am convinced that this opens a direct path to degradation and primitivism, resulting in a profound demographic and moral crisis.(emphasis added)

The “Russian bear” explicitly criticized contemporary forms of “multiculturalism,” calling it “in many respects a transplanted, artificial model…based on paying for the colonial past.”It is not a well known fact at all that the current contrived and forced brand of “multiculturalism” so many of us have come to know, is part of the Zionist design for achieving full spectrum global domination (in this case through deliberately subverting a nation’s cultural integrity and identity – multiculturalism as a sort of Trojan horse).

Not least of all in Putin’s speech was a broad allusion to and scathing critique of the New World Order a.k.a. One World Government (Zio-globalist) agenda, which amounts to global slavery, as Putin himself explains:

[W]e see attempts to somehow revive a standardised model of a unipolar world and to blur the institutions of international law and national sovereignty. Such a unipolar, standardised world does not require sovereign states; it requires vassals. In a historical sense this amounts to a rejection of one’s own identity, of the God-given diversity of the world.10 (emphasis added)

It is evident that with Obama’s exit from the Oval Office and Trump’s entrance, Russia and America have more in common now than recent memory attains. For one thing, we could never have expected such overt mutual (US-Russian) opposition to the entrenched pedophile networks operating throughout Western politics and societies in general.

Perhaps we will see the “elite” network of pedophiles and Satanists get their comeuppance in this lifetime after all.

About the Author
Brendan D. Murphy – Co-founder of Global Freedom Movement and host of GFM RadioBrendan DMurphy is a leading Australian author, researcher, activist, and musician. His acclaimed non-fiction epic The Grand Illusion: A Synthesis of Science & Spirituality – Book 1 is out now! Come and get your mind blown at www.brendandmurphy.net

“What a wonderful job of collating and integrating you have done! Every person in the field of ‘paranormal’ psychology or related topics should have this book as a major reference.” – Dr. Buryl Payne
“A masterpiece…The Grand Illusion is mind-blowing.” – Sol Luckman, author of Potentiate Your DNA.
“You’ve written the best synthesis of modern science and esoteric science that I’ve seen in 40 years of study in that area. Brilliant!”  – Michael K. Wade

Please visit – www.globalfreedommovement.org

Endnotes:

  1. http://russialist.org/transcript-putin-at-meeting-of-the-valdai-international-discussion-club-partial-transcript/
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid.
  4. Ibid.
  5. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/28/world/europe/putin-to-sign-ban-on-us-adoptions-of-russian-children.html
  6. Ibid.
  7. http://www.neonnettle.com/features/813-putin-bans-us-citizens-from-adopting-russian-children-due-to-pedophile-epidemic
  8. http://russialist.org/transcript-putin-at-meeting-of-the-valdai-international-discussion-club-partial-transcript/
  9. Ibid.
  10. Ibid.

This article (Putin Blasts Euro-Western Culture of Pedophilia and Satanism) was originally  published and is copyrighted by Global Freedom Movement and is published here with permission.

http://www.wakingtimes.com/2017/03/30/putin-blasts-euro-western-culture-pedophilia-satanism/

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The real Casanova

Resultado de imagem para Illustration by Brunelleschi

Illustration by Brunelleschi from a 1755 edition of Memories of Giacomo Casanova de Seingalt. Photo by akg-images/Fototeca Gilardi

His name is synonymous with serial seduction but Casanova’s memoirs reveal a man greater than the sum of his ‘conquests’

Laurence Bergreen is an award-winning biographer, historian, and chronicler of exploration. His books have been translated into over 25 languages worldwide. His most recent adult book is Casanova: The World of a Seductive Genius (2016). He lives in New York City.

Edited by Nigel Warburton

Everyone thinks that they know about Casanova, the legendary lover who proceeded from one romantic conquest to another, but almost no one really does. They believe that he was handsome, distinguished and practised in the arts of love, a virtual Zorro of the boudoir. That he was a wealthy member of the upper class, and celebrated in his lifetime for his exploits. So runs the fable of the great lover.

In reality, Giacomo Girolamo Casanova was a far more complex and intriguing figure, a libertine, to be sure, but so much more. And – in case there is any doubt – he was a real person. Born in Venice on 2 April 1725, he was the obscure son of a somewhat famous actress and courtesan named Zanetta Farussi and a forgotten actor, Gaetano Casanova. If anyone in this modest family qualified as a ‘Casanova’, it was his mother Zanetta with her love affairs and wiles and penchant for abandoning him. At the start of 1726, the New Theatre in the Haymarket in London hired his parents along with an ensemble of Italian comedians; Zanetta and Gaetano left Giacomo in the care of his grandmother Marzia. A little more than a year later, Gaetano and Zanetta’s second child, Francesco Giuseppe, was born, and baptised on 1 June. Rumours described him as the bastard child of King George II.

In Venice, meanwhile, young Giacomo suffered from nosebleeds that he said affected his ability to think. His environment was equally problematic. The Republic of Venice, as it was known, was extremely hierarchical, and ruled by 400 families registered in the Libro d’Oro, or Golden book, a directory of Venetian nobility. This rigid structure was destined to collapse under its own weight but, at the time, Venice thrived on sin; it was the Las Vegas of its day. Tourists came from across Europe to sample its gambling dens and its courtesans, and other illicit pleasures. Some convents functioned as harems for the daughters of wealthy families who did not want the girls to marry or to bear children. Under cover of religious vocation, they entertained well-heeled admirers and staged orgies. In time, a ‘nunnery’ became a synonym for a ‘brothel’, as Hamlet said to Ophelia. 

As the son of actors, Casanova had no place at all in Venetian society, decadent or otherwise. Actors were outcasts. They couldn’t even be buried in consecrated ground. For Casanova, a career in the clergy was the approved way up and out of the restricted circumstances of his birth. It was a path to education and a secure status in a society. He himself did not feel a sense of religious calling; quite the opposite. He was cynical about the whole experience and wrote about it in amusing, occasionally caustic terms. He did get a sense of excitement when he began preaching sermons, but for Casanova the most important part of the experience was the impression he made on women. 

In time, he found a quicker path to women and status as a successful gambler, and left the priesthood, although throughout his life he benefited from the classical education he had received. So he spent the rest of his life manufacturing identities to overcome the disadvantage of low birth. He styled himself as the Chevalier de Seingalt, appropriating a title to which he had no claim. On this basis, he managed to ingratiate himself with the aristocracy, and to gain access to women of the upper echelons, who were, at least in his account, taken in by his impersonation of an aristocrat. Each time he seduced an upper-class woman, he had a sense of evening the score, of striking a blow for the common man.

Casanova claimed that he bedded 124 women – not a lot, perhaps, by the current yardstick of some celebrity memoirs, but more than enough to qualify for libertine status, so long as he did not marry – and he never did. ‘Marriage is the tomb of love,’ he wrote in his memoirs. Who was his greatest love of all the women in his life? A Freudian would answer: his mother, very possibly present in his subconscious because of her absence in his daily life. We know a few tantalising titbits about Zanetta. Ruthlessly ambitious, she abandoned him when he was a child to pursue her vocation as an actress. Casanova saw her infrequently during the rest of his life. She retired on a pension to Prague, at the time a centre of the arts, after a reasonably distinguished and scandalous career performing in commedia dell’arte

more…

https://aeon.co/essays/is-there-more-to-the-legendary-lover-than-his-reputation

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