[Rome: Forzani et C., 1871]. First Edition. Polemical attack on the state of the French university system written in March, 1871, two months after the end of the disastrous (for the French) Franco-Prussian War. As Pasteur argues, whereas in Germany universities proliferated across the country, France, "stymied by revolution, was always occupied with the sterile search for a better form of government, giving only distracted attention to her institutions of higher learning" (p. 9, our translation). At the root of all this was the regime of Napoleon I, who, in the early years of the 19th century, neglected the country's twenty-eight extant institutions of higher learning in favor of his Université de France, a disastrously centralized state-run institution that he established in 1808. The University suffered greatly during the Restoration, and with it the quality of education so that by 1868 only £8,000 were being spent for "true academic purposes" across the country (cf. W. Chandler Roberts et al, "Journal of the Society for Arts, Vol. 32, no. 1655, August 8, 1884, p. 905), creating a lacuna of learned and innovative thinkers to match Germany's. Perhaps in order to combat this downward trend, Pasteur later founded the Pasteur Institute in 1887, serving as its director until his death in 1895.
This appears to be the only separate appearance of Pasteur's tract, published abroad and distributed to various foreign leading scientific figures, among these "Darwin's Bulldog" Thomas Henry Huxley, who makes mention of this work in an address delivered in October of that same year. The essay appeared again in print in 1947, following an even more disastrous encounter with Germany, in a collection titled "Pour l'Avenir de la Science Française." This publication quite scarce, with four physical copies noted in OCLC as of February, 2020. COPAC adds one copy, at the LEC Library (UK). Folio (33cm.); publisher's tan printed card wrappers; 18pp. Wrapper lightly soiled, faint vertical creasing, a few tiny chips to spine, ele Very Good, internally fresh and fine save the crease.