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ISBN : 978-2-9191-2247-9

Format : 15 x 21 cm

Pages : 240 pages

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Explorations coloniales au Laos
(Colonial Expeditions in Laos)

Jules Harmand | November 2010

In 1877, an account eventful expeditions into the heart of wild Laos by the soldier/scientist.

The book

“ If I were rich, I would purchase from the King of Bangkok this forgotten corner of his immense possessions, and I would come with a few Frenchmen to settle here. There is no park the equal of this one.”
During the course of two extraordinary expeditions, Jules Harmand plunges us into the mysteries of this then unknown part of Indochina, Southern Laos. We share with the colonial adventurer the emotions of his discoveries and of the many dangers confronted and overcome, the rifle always at hand. Here was an impassioned naval doctor, former companion of Francis Garnier in his war against the Pavillons Noirs, courageous in the extreme.
Today, for the traveller who knows or is beginning to know this magnificent region of Laos between Pakse, Champasak, Saravane and the Vietnamese Central Highlands, what a pleasure to imagine and fantasize recognising the different sites and monuments and tribal groups of that time. In the footsteps of Jules Harmand, this solitary empire builder, you may discover those still untouched bastions with strange customs; the Bolaven Plateau, the extraordinary beauty of untamed cascades and dizzying waterfalls. Visit Wat Phu, (one of many illustrations by Eugene Burnand which accompany the text). Take off your colonial pith helmet! You have arrived and nothing has changed!
Allow yourself now to become part of the adventure. The author unsheaths his pen like he handles his rifle!
75 illustrations by Eugène Burnand

The author

SE Explorations coloniales au Laos-auteurJules Harmand (1845-1921) after scientific and military studies he served in Indochina as a naval doctor and took part in the first archeological mission led by Louis Delaporte.
In 1873, he fought against pirates who were attacking Tonkin. He devoted himself next to the exploration of Cambodia and Laos in highly dangerous conditions. His scientific and ethnographic reports remain works of reference today.
In 1881 Dr Harmand embarked on a diplomatic career where he distinguished himself by securing the annexation of Tonkin to France. He was passionately committed to the colonial achievement and in 1910 on the advice of his friend Gustave Le Bon, he published ‘Domination et Colonialisation’. Throughout his life Jules Harmand brilliantly represented that generation of ‘soldier/scientists’ who were at the same time discoverers, conquerors, peacemakers, diplomats and administrators and who created the French Colonial Empire.