France in the New Century: Portrait of a Changing Society

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9780140259223: France in the New Century: Portrait of a Changing Society

In this authoritative work, the author explores the lives, society, and cultural fabric of the French people, illuminating this influential and stimulating nation. From cultured and stressful Paris to the increasingly independent provinces, Ardagh presents a balanced and vivid account of the state of the nation.

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Product Description:

Presenting a portrait of changes in French society since 1945, with the accent on the France of the mid-1990s, this book's main focus is on society, culture and the economy, but space is also given to politics.

Review:

John Ardagh established himself as an astute observer of France some 40 years ago and in his latest foray into all things French he reinforces his reputation. Whether he is dealing with the disillusionment of politics or the disappearance of the Parisian pissoir, his portrait of France brings us bang up-to-date. He has an enviable facility for marshalling a mass of facts and figures and fashioning them into an authoritative and highly readable narrative. The book's essence is to evoke a nation undergoing rapid change in which reform meets resistance and the transformation of traditional attitudes traumatic. Ardagh's reporting ranges from the paradoxes of the French "economic miracle" to the cultural conflicts fought our over the direction of its drama and music, cinema and television. He pictures the position of France in Europe and the world while at the same time short-focussing his lens to pinpoint particulars such as the battle of the little shopkeepers against the growth of the hypermarkets. Ardagh is a francophile but his love of the country does not prevent him from being frank about its failings. He finds himself less pessimistic than many of the French about the state of their country, and for anyone seriously interested in understanding what is happening in France today there can be no better starting point than Ardagh's analysis. -- Michael Hatfield

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John Ardagh
Published by Penguin Books (2000)
ISBN 10: 0140259228 ISBN 13: 9780140259223
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Ardagh, John
Published by Penguin Books (2001)
ISBN 10: 0140259228 ISBN 13: 9780140259223
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