The Decline of the Third Republic, 1914-1938 (The Cambridge History of Modern France)
This book, the fifth in the series 'The Cambridge History of Modern France', provides a detailed account of the Third Republic between the outbreak of the First World War and the fall of Blum's ministry soon after Hitler's invasion and annexation of Austria in 1938. Following the trauma of the War, France slipped first into an 'era of illusions' in which the pre-war world was to be reconstructed from the spoils of victory, later taking a more realistic stance in the comparative 'prosperity' of the 1920s. But France could not be entirely rid of the illusion of her power in the world, nor of the illusions of social and political harmony. Deep social and economic divisions began to separate different classes and ways of life, which were widened by the year of the slump. The triumph of Leon Blum and the Front Populaire in 1936, against a background of intellectual brilliance but profound economic and social problems, was short-lived because of its economic ineffectiveness and eventually gave way to Daladier's conservatively based ministry. By that time, however, Hitler's territorial advances in Europe began to unite political opinion against a common enemy who was soon to put France's political and economic 'stability' to the test.
- 052135854X (ISBN-10)
- 9780521358545 (ISBN)