The lecture goes smoothly. I conclude by praising the French left for having politically evolved: for having ultimately abandoned their pro-Chinese ideological blinders and transformed themselves into civil society and human rights activists. Thus, in one of the ironies of French intellectual politics, it was former Maoists and China-sympathizers who, during the mid-1970s, as a way of atoning for their earlier political credulity, would catalyze the incipient antitotalitarian movement. Paradoxically, many ex-Maoists also metamorphosed into the leading proponents of the so-called “new social movements”: feminism, ecology, immigrant rights, and homosexual liberation.
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