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Polity Press
09 October 2020
France is the most-visited country in the world. It attracts millions of tourists, most of whom come in search of beautiful architecture, good food, and fine art. But appearances can be deceptive. France is not only a place of culture and glamour; it also carries the bitter memories of violence, division and broken promises.

In this arresting book, Emile Chabal, a leading specialist of contemporary France, tells the story of a paradoxical country. From the calamitous defeat by Hitler's armies in 1940 to the spectacular gilets jaunes protests, he explores the contradictions that have shaped French history over the last eighty years. The picture that emerges is one of a nation struggling to reconcile its core political values with the realities of a diverse society.
By:   Emile Chabal
Imprint:   Polity Press
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 185mm,  Width: 111mm,  Spine: 18mm
Weight:   594g
ISBN:   9781509530021
ISBN 10:   1509530029
Series:   Polity Histories
Pages:   224
Publication Date:   09 October 2020
Audience:   Professional and scholarly ,  Undergraduate
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Emile Chabal is a Reader in History at the University of Edinburgh. He is one of the foremost experts on twentieth-century French political and intellectual history. He has published widely on topics such as French republicanism, secularism, the legacies of empire, identity politics and Franco-British relations, including a groundbreaking study of French politics entitled A Divided Republic: nation, state and citizenship in contemporary France.

Reviews for France

A refreshing and tightly written introduction to France's recent history. Arthur Asseraf, University of Cambridge In this highly polished introduction to contemporary France, Chabal combines a keen eye for detail with an admirable capacity for vivid narration and analytical generalisation. His focus on France's modern paradoxes offers a stimulating and enjoyable point of entry into the ongoing fractures of its contemporary social and political life. Sudhir Hazareesingh, Oxford University This superb analysis of how France's current struggles--over diversity, state authority, the EU, and much else--emerged from its history since 1940 will enthrall newcomers to the subject and experts alike. A major achievement. Herrick Chapman, New York University Superb upon finishing Chabal's France one comes away feeling that few authors could have compressed more pertinent discussion into so few pages. It is a truly remarkable book. Art Goldhammer, Tocqueville 21


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