Le Canard enchainé (literally: “the chained duck”; “canard” is also slang for newspaper) is a French satirical publication, founded in 1915. It is, perhaps, the equivalent of the UK’s Private Eye.
While browsing in a second-hand bookshop in Galerie Borthier in Brussels, I stumbled across a stash of Dictionnaire Canard – hors série “specials” from the early 1960s. I loved the format and the artwork in them, but they were quite pricey, so I bought only four.
They offer an intriguing peek into an era when France was still quite repressive, grimly patriarchal and heavily militaristic (France had exploded its first atomic bomb in Algeria in 1960), in the days before the événements of May 1968 turned society upside-down. Le Canard enchainé‘s favourite targets included President De Gaulle, the A-bomb, la force de frappe, religion and Brigitte Bardot.
Here, then, is a selection of my favourite pages.
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VOUS SEREZ NUE MERCREDI SOIR: FRENCH GENRE PAPERBACK COVER ART
PASSAGE DU CAIRE
- Cartoon: Sarkozy Downgraded (englishblog.com)
- The Trappes riot (arunwithaview.wordpress.com)
- France’s doubled fiber-optic networks suggest spying in Africa (wikileaks-forum.com)
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