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Playing with Greece : Pierre de Coubertin and the Motherland of Humanities and Olympics
Histoire@Politique. Politique, culture, société
Liste AERES Histoire
The French baron Pierre de Coubertin (1863-1937) is famous for the revival of the Olympic Games in Athens in 1896. Far less known is the fact that he wanted the first modern Game to take place in Paris in 1900 simultaneously with the Universal Exhibition. But his plan, inspired by liberal and pacifist ideals, was postponed due to the vigourous opposition of the Greek diplomacy and of Démétrios Bikelas. This paper puts into perspective the influence of philhellenism in de Coubertin's projects, compared to liberal and pacifist motives. The cultural philhellenism of the European elites played a role in the invention of the Olympic tradition.
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