London, Jan 8 (ANI): Winston Churchill's popularity has suddenly surged in France, thanks to a new translation of his Second World War memoirs and a prize-winning biography hitting bookstores.
Churchill, who is known as "Le Vieux Lion" in France, is particularly famous for being the Prime Minister of Britain during World War II and leading the country's war effort.
"The younger generation knew very little about Churchill but they are beginning to discover him through the memoirs," Times Online quoted Frangois Kersaudy, the author of Churchill's new biography, as saying.
Kersaudy, 61, whose book bagged the Grand Prix last year, pointed out that the high regard for Churchill reflects "nostalgia for great leaders when there seem to be so many small ones around...There is special nostalgia for Churchill with his contempt for the opinion of the man in the street when present leaders are obsessed with opinion polls."
He added: "He was always a great hero to the wartime generation. We counted on him to liberate us.... The older generation held him in very great respect. He remained immensely popular in the 1950s while \ de Gaulle had sort of disappeared."
Critics agree that the new and better translations of Churchill's wartime memoirs by Kersaudy have captured the interest of the French reader.
In fact, Churchill's accounts are now being compared with de Gaulle's own great account of the era.
The two books are now being reprinted after 50,000 copies were sold initially. (ANI)