« Le monde est arrivé à une impasse, et nous nous consumons probablement en vain à chercher une issue par de profondes combinaisons théoriques. »These are Edgar Quinet's words, written in the early 1850s. I found them quoted on page 161 of Christophe Charle's Les intellectuels en Europe au XIXe siecle. Charle himself is quoting them from another secondary source. Since a precise day is given (December 22nd, 1853), I assume that they are from a letter or a journal. The strong assumption is that they refer somehow to the aftermath of Louis Napoleon's coup, and the likely course of his government. Perhaps I will hunt it down.