Cover image for Napoleon
Alexander, R. S., 1954-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
London : Arnold ; New York : Co-published in the United States of America by Oxford University Press, 2001.
Physical Description:
viii, 273 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm.
Introduction -- The life and times -- Heir of the Revolution? Napoleon and the French Left prior to World War One -- Napoleon and the Nineteenth-Century Right: the great commander and the man on horseback -- Prototype for Hitler and Mussolini? Napoleon and fascism -- The great man: Napoleon in Nineteenth-Century literature and art -- The people's choice? Napoleon and popular culture -- The great man meets the Twentieth Century -- Napoleon and Europe: conqueror or unifier? -- Conclusion.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DC203 .A5 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Drawing on the latest scholarship, this addition to the Reputations series treats Napoleon as a universal figure, rather than a specifically French one. It focuses on the ways in which Napoleon's reputation has been altered by such events as the World Wars and the Cold War, and by associationwith such figures as Hitler, Santa Anna, Mehemet Ali, and Mussolini.

Author Notes

R. S. Alexander, Associate Professor of History, University of Victoria.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

The issue of Napoleon's place in history has sustained a long-running debate, and the literature on the topic is vast. Biographers and historians have come to different conclusions, although the facts of his life have been agreed on to a high degree. Alexander (Univ. of Victoria, Canada) wisely does not attempt to find the "real" Napoleon. Instead, he focuses on the ways ideologists, scholars, politicians, artists, and others have depicted Napoleon--as the betrayer or champion of the French Revolution, the Great Commander, forerunner of fascism, or simply Great Man. Images of Napoleon in art, literature, and popular culture receive sufficient attention, too. Of the three determinants for interpretations, historical evidence has delivered sturdy building blocks and commensurately lasting images. The intentions of groups and individuals to shape a Napoleon of their liking--be it one to admire or to hate--have exerted their influence. Each historical context has put its accents and highlights on Napoleon's life and achievements. This clearly written and well-researched book includes a short biography of Napoleon and a chronological table of his life. Recommended for all levels and collections. E. A. Breisach emeritus, Western Michigan University

Table of Contents

Reputation construction
The war of image commences: Napoleon and the liberals
Popular Bonapartism
Napoleon and the triumphant republic
Napoleon and the right
Determinism, structuralism and the great man
The great man and the 'weaker sex'
The modern Charlemagne and European integration