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  • Author: Lionel Jospin
  • Publication Date: 06-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Since the relationship between France and the United States is going through a difficult period, we must find opportunities to talk things over. It is true that it is not always easy to broach the subject of this relationship between the US and France in a balanced and reasonable way. We idealize its past and blacken its present. On the one hand, invoking the illustrious names of such figures as Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Pierre- Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais, or the marquis de la Fayette romanticizes the actually very complicated political and diplomatic process that brought France to America's aid during the War of Independence. Neither the monarchical France of the Ancien Régime, nor that of the revolutionary Terror that led up to the Caesar-state of Bonaparte could have been in perfect symbiosis with the young American democratic republic, despite our shared Enlightenment references.
  • Political Geography: United States, America, France
  • Author: Edward Berenson
  • Publication Date: 06-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Did ordinary citizens support empire? Did a broad public respond to the plethora of colonialist propaganda, ideas, and images that circulated during the era of high imperialism (1880-1940)? Historians of French colonialism have joined their British counterparts in a renewed scholarly debate over public attitudes toward overseas expansion. Although a few historians have maintained that empire enjoyed wides pread support, until recently the consensus in both the French and British literature has been that imperialism interested elite groups far more than average citizens. Working people, according to most scholars, have been influenced least of all.
  • Topic: Culture
  • Author: Donald Reid
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Germaine Tillion and Geneviève de Gaulle Anthonioz drew on their experiences as deported resisters at the Ravensbrück concentration camp to put forth narratives of deportation with compelling sets of imperatives for survivors and their audiences: Tillion placed the experience of camp prisoners in a continuum of clochardisation preceded by slavery and colonialism, enterprises in which France played a larger role than Germany, while de Gaulle Anthonioz extended the camp experience past 1945 to the creation and maintenance of an underclass in advanced capitalist societies like France. Reflection on their years at Ravensbrück encouraged Tillion and de Gaulle Anthonioz to look upon those left outside of prosperous postwar France - clochards in Algeria and the desperately poor in France - as being of the world they had lived in in the camps. This encouraged them to revisit their experience as providing understanding and insights for the survival and resistance of these disinherited.
  • Political Geography: France, Germany, Algeria
  • Author: Katherine A. R. Opello
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: This study uses the case of the French Socialists to show that electoral incentives best explain the timing of party officials' quota decisions. It would be easy to assume that the ideological predispositions of party officials and the agendas of women's organizations and party feminists would be determinant here, but there are two main reasons why this is not the case. First, non-electoral explanations, like ideology, fail to consider the constraints imposed on actors by the electoral system. If political actors try to ensure that they win an electoral game defined by the existing electoral system, it seems unlikely that non-electoral concerns would outweigh strategic or electoral ones. Second, evidence suggests that PS officials responded to feminists' requests for gender quotas only when they had electoral incentives to do so. Specifically, women's organizations' demands for quotas were met when these organizations posed an electoral threat, and PS feminists' quota proposals succeeded when party officials had electoral incentives to co-opt them.
  • Author: Elisabeth Vallet
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Les évolutions amenées par la révision constitutionnelle du 28 mars 2003 -la plus importante depuis 1958 - présentent le risque de transformer un État nation en un État groupusculaire et consacrent le principe d'une décentralisation "dissymétrique". Dans ce contexte, transposer à la Corse par exemple le raisonnement qui a conduit à la reconnaissance en 1998 de l'existence du peuple kanak pourrait durablement fragiliser les fondations de l'État. Pour autant, les dispositions constitutionnelles présentent une élasticité qui permet de "supporter des interprétations très diverses". Elles offrent notamment la possibilité d'un glissement vers la forme hybride de l'État autonomique. Si cette mutation contrevient à la perception traditionnelle de l'unité étatique, elle met un terme aux pragmatismes de circonstance et au traitement conjoncturel des revendications régionales.
  • Author: Catherine Grémion
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Ainsi, la conjonction de trois facteurs-les mouvements de mobilité spatiale et résidentielle chez les uns, la progression des mesures en faveur du droit à la vie familiale et la fin de l'emploi faiblement qualifié chez les autres-a-t-elle contribué à générer une situation nouvelle et créé un phénomène spécifique, les "quartiers en difficulté". La tendance à l'exit 21 des plus qualifiés de ces habitants, qui quittent ces lieux pour des zones plus favorisées, se voit contre-balancée par un attachement réel d'une forte proportion de ses membres à un mode de vie spécifique.
  • Author: Richard Kuisel
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: What do the French think of Americans and the United States? This is a grand question whose answer reveals a crucial dimension of the current tension in Franco-American relations. It is also a question that can be answered reasonably well. Transatlantic troubles have stirred interest in ascertaining the state of public opinion. The result is an extraordinary number of comprehensive surveys conducted over the last five years. The US Department of State, for example, has systematically monitored French attitudes. So have many French and American polling agencies like SOFRES, CSA, and the Pew Center. Foundations like the French-American Foundation and the German Marshall Fund of the US have also sponsored research. Between fifteen and twenty thousand Frenchmen and women have recorded their opinion in such surveys. This evidence provides a unique opportunity for research into how the man- or woman-in-the-street views the United States.
  • Topic: International Relations
  • Political Geography: United States, America, France
  • Author: Charles Cogan
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: The level of damage from the March 2003 imbroglio in the UN Security Council remains to be thoroughly assessed, particularly in view of the continuing violence in Iraq. In a sense, this crisis was a heaven-sent opportunity for France to stand for a principle and at the same time maintain its reputation of being able to face up to the United States, in this case threatening the use of a powerful diplomatic tool at its disposal, the veto in the UN Security Council. The crisis that landed in the Security Council represented a unique way for France to assert its "difference" from the United States, which it had been seeking to do, with varying degrees of success, since de Gaulle's time. The French could hardly be expected to pass up such an opportunity, especially since, as they saw it, the issue was crystal clear from the point of view of logic: The United States had failed to make the case for invading Iraq that had any contemporaneity to it-Resolution 687 was twelve years old. The question of "Why now?" had not been satisfactorily answered.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, France
  • Author: Jean Baubérot
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: République, appelée plus généralement "Commission Stasi," du nom de son président, a joué un rôle central dans l'adoption de la loi du 15 mars 2004 interdisant le port "ostensible" de signes religieux à l'école publique. Pourtant, dans le rapport qu'elle a remis au président de la République le 11 décembre 2003, la question des "signes religieux" à l'école n'occupe qu'environ huit pages sur les 151 qui constituent le rapport. Ce rapport propose vingt-six mesures, et seule celle sur les signes religieux a été adoptée par les députés et les sénateurs pour avoir force de loi. La commission a-t-elle été "trahie"? Certains de ses membres l'affirment. Pour ma part, je ne le pense pas. Il est vrai que je n'ai pas voté cette proposition d'interdiction, et j'ai été moins surpris que mes collègues par la tournure des événements. Par ailleurs, étant à la fois historien et sociologue, j'ai tenté-au fur et à mesure du déroulement des travaux de la commission-de comprendre ce qui se passait et dans quel contexte cela advenait. C'est de cela dont je voudrais rendre compte.
  • Author: Patrick Weil
  • Publication Date: 09-2004
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: On July 3, 2003, President Jacques Chirac set up an independent commission to study the implementation of the principle of laïcité [secularism] in the French Republic. I was a member of that commission, chosen most likely for my expertise in the field of immigration policy and nationality law and as a former member of the High Advisory Council on Integration. I arrived with the idea that a law was probably unnecessary for resolving the problems. Yet, after four months of public hearings involving representatives of all religious confessions, political parties, unions, NGOs, and above all actors on the ground-principals, teachers, parents, students, directors of hospitals and jails, company managers - I endorsed a report recommending twenty - five different measures, including the ban on conspicuous religious symbols in public schools. In this essay I would like to explain why.
  • Topic: Law