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Larzac in the Broad 1968 and After

Donald Reid

With roots in the transformation of France during and after the Algerian War, the opposition by the farmers of Larzac and their largely urban allies throughout France to the expansion of a military camp into their lands is an emblematic event in the broad 1968 stretching a decade on either side of that year. It was particularly significant at Larzac, where a community of resistance remains today. Drawing on progressive Catholic thought and a new representation of the paysan, the conflict resonated in a France negotiating the terrain of a post-colonial era, a new relationship between the rural and the urban, and the feminist expectations of many supporters.

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Léopold Sédar Senghor prisonnier de guerre allemand

Une nouvelle approche fondée sur un texte inédit

Raffael Scheck

Senghor was a German prisoner of war for twenty months. The article examines his claims about his captivity in light of archival evidence, in particular an unknown report about his experiences in two POW camps that he deposited at the French diplomatic mission for POWs a few months after his dismissal. The article confirms that Senghor identified himself foremost as a French patriot but argues that his claims about having been a Gaullist and resister of the first hour rest on insecure ground. In particular, Senghor after the war dramatized the story of his combat experience and made dubious claims about having been sent to a reprisal camp as a punishment for helping some prisoners escape. His captivity report, however, provides much evidence on the effects of German pro-Islamic propaganda and on corrupt prisoner networks. The report also describes many experiences reflected in his poetry cycle Hosties noires.

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Les électeurs socialistes dans les primaires présidentielles à Paris

Marino De Luca

Several parties throughout the world are democratizing their internal processes. The most notable tools for achieving this aim are the primary elections through which electoral candidates and party leaders are selected. This article seek to analyze these “selections” by using survey data relating to primary elections held in October 2011 by the French Socialist Party. In particular, we make use of survey data to describe extensively some social and political characteristics of the voters and to connect them with the electoral performances of the candidates.

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More than a Turn?

The “Colonial” in French Studies

Emmanuelle Saada

With the “colonial turn” in French studies now on the wane, this article attempts to assess its contributions. It suggests that one of the main thrusts of the “colonial turn” has been the reconsideration of the “Republic” as a framework for understanding modern French history: the colonies being the place where the Republic “contradicted itself” or, on the contrary, where its deepest tensions revealed themselves. While this perspective has been essential in underlining the importance of race in modern French history, it can be regarded as no more than an attempt to write a history of “France” enriched by the imperial perspective: indigenous worlds appear only secondarily in these analysis of the “imperial Republic.” This shortcoming echoes other criticisms that can be addressed to the “colonial turn” in French studies: the ahistorical use of the category of the “colonial” in the singular and the lack of satisfactory analysis of the “postcolonial.”

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Nous sommes tous francophones

Laurent Dubois and Achille Mbembe

This article offers a genealogy of the impact of French and Francophone Studies during the past decades in order to offer suggestions about how the field might be reconfigured and re-imagined in the present. We argue that the best way forward will be to dispense with traditional boundaries and borders within the field and instead embrace a general identity as Francophonists in order to bring together work on and from different regions of the globe.

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Abstracts

Abstracts

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Black Market Fictions

Au bon beurre, La traversée de Paris, and the Black Market in France

Kenneth Mouré

Jean Dutourd's novel Au bon beurre (1952) and Claude Autant-Lara's film La Traversée de Paris (1956) offer the best-known depictions of black market activity in Occupied France, appreciated by audiences who had lived through the war. This article looks at the black market stories they tell and their reception in France in the 1950s. It focuses on the fictional stories in relation to the historical experience from which they were drawn, and analyzes their selective representation of behaviors and the key relationships on which black market activity relied. Both works capture widely shared Occupation experiences of food shortages and exploitation. They highlight popular resentment of profiteers, the ability of the wealthy to escape wartime hardship and postwar justice, and the corruption and incompetence of the state in managing shortages and postwar purges.

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Book Reviews

Sarah A. Curtis The Pariahs of Yesterday: Breton Migrants in Paris by Leslie Page Moch

Claudie Bernard La Virginité féminine: Mythes, fantasmes, émancipation by Yvonne Knibiehler

Bertram M. Gordon Exclusions: Practicing Prejudice in French Law and Medicine, 1920–1945 by Julie Fette

Christopher Endy The French Way: How France Embraced and Rejected American Values and Power by Richard F. Kuisel

Michael Seidman La Fin du village: Une histoire française by Jean-Pierre Le Goff

Andrea Smith Rites of the Republic: Citizens' Theatre and the Politics of Culture in Southern France by Mark Ingram

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Ça commence aujourd' hui, Être et avoir et Entre les murs

Une vision diffractée de l'école républicaine française

Annie Jouan-Westlund

The essay is a detailed cinematic and cultural analysis of Ça commence aujourd'hui by Bertrand Tavernier (1999), Être et Avoir by Nicolas Philibert (2003) and Entre les Murs by Laurent Cantet (2008). It contrasts the cinematic depictions of three French schools in rural, urban, and suburban France. Through a comparison of locations, pedagogy, and student expectation, the essay shows a contrasted and diffracted vision of the French educational system portrayed in the films. In the context of school reforms debated in France, the essay points out the variety and complexity of different schools visualized through the cinematic lens, and it questions the French Republic's ability to successfully fulfill its mission to educate young citizens of various social, racial, and cultural backgrounds.

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Hélène Berr et l'écriture de l'histoire

Nathan Bracher

The present article argues that Hélène Berr's Journal goes well beyond mere testimony to provide an astute analysis not only of the persecutory measures, arrests, camps, and deportations but also of the various attempts to camouflage the violence and even of the wider implications of what she ultimately recognized to be a systematic extermination. Hélène Berr thus presents an extraordinary case of a young French Jewish student at the Sorbonne who, steeped in literature but untrained in history, nevertheless achieved a degree of historical lucidity that, in view of the confused, limited, and often unreliable information available to her in Nazi-occupied Paris, we can only consider as remarkable. Above all, Hélène Berr's very personal confrontation with history, as it unfolded in all the sinister complexity of what we now know as the Holocaust, enables us to better understand these events in the human terms in which they were experienced and with the ethical dimensions that they take on for us today.