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This project showed the magic of science in progress which fascinated the public. Vivid descriptions from reporters insisted on the sophistication of the aircraft and the completion of every detail as technical proof. In those days, wireless telegraphy was a useful tool as well as a powerful symbol of modernity.

VERNE : Mathias Sandorf -

Thus the pilot was photographed in military uniform, wearing his decorations and holding a receiver. His heroic past — also recalled by the stork painted on his plane — was associated with the pursuit of progress over the Atlantic that this receiver symbolized. The trichromatic print which had been preferred to the black one added to the liveliness and the modernity of the picture fig. They were fascinated by the plane as much as the sportsman who would take its stick. Every single thing became a matter of discussion during the preparation of the air raid.

It would be eaten on his arrival in Paris These are some of the examples that illustrate how much attention was being given by the French press to the modern adventure Fonck was planning. This was generally the case for any attempt to fly across the Atlantic at the time and it reveals the ongoing the popularity of aerial culture on a global scale There is no doubt that Captain Fonck is not just seeking glory.

This fantastic long-distance flight must be providing him with something else. But do you believe that in undertaking such a mad venture that he will earn as much as some boxers or, even, as much as Miss Lenglen, the tennis champion? Whereas the adventurer does not know any frontier because he flies over them, the knight only lives to defend the borders of his country. Not without exercising a certain degree of chauvinism, most French newspapers therefore saw this venture as a mostly French performance that was kindly supported by the United States — the funding and the plane came from this country.

Thus, this is not only a French undertaking […] but a veritable record attempt which underlines both the energy and the tenacity of a Frenchman and an American. The plane will bear the colors of both countries […]. There is no doubt that Fonck will take off and add a new exploit to the innumerable French aerial performances The French would be unpleasantly embarrassed at seeing he who held the flag of French aviation at the end of the war fly an aircraft built in the United States by a Russian engineer, equipped with English motors French license , and accompanied by an officer and a navigator who are American This reminds us how powerful the association was between a pilot and his aircraft in the popular imagination.

In late August , while French pilots Tarascon and Coli also announced their intention to fly over the Atlantic — soon followed by the twice speed record-breaker Arrachart — French newspapers generally took the side of the pilots who remained French and showed national preference in the choice of plane It will be as if I was sat in an armchair.

This was closer to the image of the dauntless adventurer, sure of his strength and his coming success, than to the myth of the modest knight of the air. This declaration was also a way of calming the growing impatience of observers as the preparations were getting longer and rumors circulated that the flight would be cancelled Whereas a very optimistic departure date had been given by some newspapers as July , the attempt was only to take place on September 21 of that year He had to go fast and to act. Then, toppling over, the aircraft burnt to ashes before the eyes of numerous reporters and news cameras which had come to immortalize the event.

Lawrence Curtin managed to get out of the aircraft, the radio operator Charles Clavier and the navigator Jacob Islamoff were trapped inside and were burnt alive. The press was divided when it came to deciding who was responsible for this drama. Nothing was lost, however, as his honor is assured. Because the journal evokes the safe honor of the airman, the reader understands the setback to the myth of the knight of the sky. Le Miroir des Sports left its readers to draw their own conclusions with a photo of the burning aircraft fig. This enhanced how dramatic the situation had been fig. Showing himself to be fallible, the heroic figure of the airman was no longer reliable.

If, in contrast to the New York Times , French newspapers reported that the pilot asked for news of his partners immediately after the crash, readers could see that Fonck had burst into tears whereas, before, he had managed to keep his composure As he survived this failure, Fonck left no room for mystery or fantasy which surrounded a brutal but heroic and tragic death. No longer did he fit the image of the invincible airman that soared above common people. Because he failed to link the earth and the sky, he revealed his human condition. The disenchanted French press therefore relayed the end of an absolute dream The latter was an invincible gentleman of the air who fought elegant aerial duels.

His case is therefore a perfect example of the way the French press shaped a few heroes from a sample of preexisting representations. The latter were partly reconstructed using the context and certain events in which these new champions were protagonists. The horizons of aspirations, which were endlessly overcome, made the aces almost divine. As Fonck showed himself to be fallible, it appeared as though he had become a mere mortal. He disappointed the public because he failed his attempt and survived to his failure. The latter then considered the pilot as merely a glory from the old days, but no longer a fascinating hero.

This highlights how a flyer without wings was no longer of interest in a country henceforth fully airminded. Koselleck, Vergangene Zukunft. La fin des sportifs? These successes had to be confirmed by witnesses to be registered as an official win after a procedure of homologation. Fonck got these five victories after he spent over 21 months in an observation squadron and eventually got to joined a fighter squadron on April Cazals, E.

Picard and D. Heil et al. Fritzsche, A Nation of Fliers. It is actually true for most of the belligerents. Becker and S. Audoin-Rouzeau eds. By recurrence and in association with other mythemes, it contributes to a mythical discourse — a narrative — with characters, situations and settings. Hinde and H. Watson eds. You have the highest bid!

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