THE RESHAPING OF FRENCH DEMOCRACY by Gordon Wright

THE RESHAPING OF FRENCH DEMOCRACY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Report repeated from the December 15, 1947 bulletin- as follows: ""With France a proving ground of Communist strength in western Europe, this book is of immediate importance. Its permanent value lies in the perceptive, comprehensive, objective analysis of the making of the constitution under which the 4th Republic is functioning. A brief summary of the checkered career of the 3rd Republic; of the hiatus of the Vichy regime; of the contribution made by the underground and Free French overseas, of the dominance of De Gaulle,- this backgrounds the blow by blow study of the constituent assemblies in session. Particularly important is the thoughtful weighing of Communist tactics- now cooperation, now compromise, now blocking- their aim to work through legal methods as long as possible. Personalities emerge. The forming of the two new party movements is given emphasis,- the MRP (Mouvement Republicain Populaire) and the more recent RPF Rassemblement du Peuple Francais) which produced a landslide for De Gaulle in October. International affairs and internal reforms are touched upon, as they influenced the swing of popular sentiment. The changing values and their significance are given due consideration. The slender achievements of three years and the Monnet plan are balanced against the changes achieved by the new constitution. Not easy reading- but worthwhile. Some knowledge of French history is a prerequisite.

Publisher: Reynal & Hitchcock