|Artist / Creator
40×29 cm ~ 16×11 inch
These were published by the most consistent weekly anti-Dreyfus publication. A weekly journal created specifically as a rallying point against the Alfred Dreyfus Affair. Psst! contains no text, only illustrations and captions from the pens of Forain and Caran Ache, principal French caricaturists of their day.
The Dreyfus Affair was an explosive, pivotal moment in the history of France Third Republic. For all of her liberte, egalite, fraternite, France was revealed to be rife with the same unfounded bigotry towards Jews as other less enlightened nations. Opposing camps of Dreyfusards and anti-Dreyfusards settled in as the long political ordeal raged through, not only, French courtrooms, kitchens and marketplaces but the drawing rooms of the outside world as well. This public interest in the Dreyfus conflagration was a 19th century equivalent to the O.J. Trial! Everyone had an opinion. Psst! represented the stiletto sharp but badly misled reiteration of Dreyfus guilt. This magazine unswerving aim was clearly based on preserving the respect and power of the French army and not in establishing who really passed military secrets to the German attache. Widely read during its brief life Psst…! even provoked the creation of another weekly magazine Le Sifflet which sought to maintain Dreyfus innocence. This is propaganda distilled to its purest form, directed at the emotions, without words to complicate the reader’s mental clarity. It was this type of literature and its compelling anti-Semitic position which prompted Theodor Herzl’s call for a Jewish Homeland, as well as Emile Zola famous burst of intellectual outrage.