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Whores and Niqabées

The Sexual Boundaries of French Nationalism

Julie Billaud and Julie Castro

This essay seeks to analyze the recent reconfigurations of French nationalism, taking as an entry point the legal treatment of veiled Muslim women and prostitutes over the past two decades. We argue that the bodies of prostitutes and veiled Muslim women, both of which have been targeted by successive legal interventions in order to exclude them from the public space, have become central political sites for the state to assert its sovereign power and trigger nationalist feelings. This comparative analysis of gendered “lawfare“ (which John Comaroff has defined as the judicialization of politics and the resort to legal instruments to commit acts of political coercion) provides insights into a new form of nationalism that strives to foster “sexual liberalism“ as a core value of citizenship in order to enforce a virile nationalism, prescribe new sexual normativities, and criminalize immigrants and those living at the social margins.

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From Black-Blanc-Beur to Black-Black-Black?

“L'Affaire des Quotas” and the Shattered “Image of 1998” in Twenty-First-Century France

Christopher S. Thompson

Since the mid-1990s, France's national soccer team has been given considerable significance in French debates about post-colonial immigration, national identity, republican citizenship, and the enduring legacies of French imperialism. This article explores the role played by representations of the team in those debates with a particular focus on the so-called “affaire des quotas” of 2010–2011. It argues that those representations reveal that the boundary between the purportedly inclusive civic nationalism of French republicanism according to which any person willing to embrace the duties and rights of democratic citizenship may theoretically become French, and the exclusionary ethnic nationalism of the xenophobic Front national is far less impermeable than is generally assumed in France. Indeed, race and ethnicity inform notions of French citizenship even among persons who reject the essentialist views of the Far Right.

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Laird Boswell

Eugen Weber's Peasants into Frenchmen has had an enduring impact on historians of European nationalism. This article situates Weber's influence on the field of nationalism and focuses on regions that played a crucial role in his analysis: peripheries. Peripheries are central to historians studying the construction of the French nation and the forging of contemporary European identity. Scholars have moved beyond Weber by developing a dynamic model of the relationship between center and periphery, and they have paid close attention to the relationship between regional and national identities. While the field of nationalism has evolved substantially since Weber's time, the questions he posed over thirty years ago still lie at the center of scholarly concerns.

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Demos and Nation

Misplacing the Dilemmas of the European Union--In Memory of Stanley Hoffmann

Charles S. Maier

Volk. How they acquired statehood constituted the lessons that generations of students learned as the core of historical knowledge. Nations did not need territorial instantiation; although as Ernest Gellner summarized, nationalism was the national

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Sophie Meunier

reverberates beyond its borders as much as it used to. The current uncertain state of the world, which may be on the cusp of a tectonic shift precipitated by the advent of Donald Trump in the United States and the resurgence of nationalism in Europe, is both

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Conflicted Power of the Pen

The Impact of French Internment on the Pacifist Convictions and Literary Imagination of Lion Feuchtwanger

Nicole Dombrowski Risser

to German nationalism. The French nation-state and its people, heirs to a revolutionary tradition steeped in liberty, equality, and freedom, became the keystone of Feuchtwanger’s reconfigured moral and political universe. Three works, Paris Gazette

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Tyler Stovall

Tzvetan Todorov, On Human Diversity: Nationalism, Racism, and Exoticism in French Thought (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1993)

Sue Peabody, “There Are No Slaves in France”: The Political Culture of Race and Slavery in the Ancien Régime (New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996)

Patricia M. E. Lorcin, Imperial Identities: Stereotyping, Prejudice and Race in Colonial Algeria (London and New York: I.B. Tauris, 1995)

Maxim Silverman, Deconstructing the Nation: Immigration, Racism and Citizenship in Modern France (London and New York: Routledge, 1992)

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Jeremy D. Popkin The Cult of the Nation in France: Inventing Nationalism, 1680-1800 by David A. Bell

Jay M. Smith A Revolution in Language: The Problem of Signs in Late Eighteenth-Century France by Sophia Rosenfeld

Ted W. Margadant Making Democracy in the French Revolution by James Livesey

Gay L. Gullickson Daughters of Eve: A Cultural History of French Theater Women from the Old Regime to the Fin-de-Siècle by Lenard R. Berlanstein

Elinor A. Accampo A Social Laboratory for Modern France: The Musée Social and the Rise of the Welfare State by Janet R. Horne

Thomas Ertman Institutions and Innovation: Voters, Parties, and Interest Groups in the Consolidation of Democracy—France and Germany, 1870-1939 by Marcus Kreuzer

Frank R. Baumgartner La Longue Marche des universités françaises by Christine Musselin

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William F.S. Miles

Nineteen eighty-two marked a milestone in the history of Martinique and the career of Aimé Césaire. One year had passed since François Mitterrand's election as president and Césaire's declaration of a "moratorium" on challenging the island's status as a French département (state). Pro-independence violence still rocked the French West Indies. In this interview Césaire discusses the burdens of material dependency, dangers of in- and out-migration, centralizing legacies of France, opportunities afforded by Socialist governance, the need for decentralization, and the future of Martinican identity. The interview reveals Césaire's strategic flexibility within inviolate principles, his unique capacity to channel his people's psyche, his keen recognition of the relationship between nationalism and economics, and his sensitivity to micropolitics and intra-island differences.

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Vincent Martigny

The 2007 Presidential election has been the occasion of a fierce debate between Nicolas Sarkozy and Segolène Royal on the issue of national identity. The victory of Nicolas Sarkozy has led to the creation of a Ministry of National Identity and Immigration, linking in a controversial way the management of newcomers and their acceptance of allegedly historical national "values." This article examines the debate during the campaign. It provides an analysis of the reasons why the definition and defense of national identity was discussed in the course of the election, and outlines the viewpoints of the two candidates on this issue. Finally, it argues that the temptation to fix politically the content of national identity is an ancient one in France. What has been presented as part of Nicolas Sarkozy's "rupture" with the past in this domain is in fact the latest development of a form of "state nationalism" that has been prevailing in France in recent decades.