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Modern and Contemporary France

Module Code: FR113
Module Name: Modern and Contemporary France
Module Credits: 30

Consult the full module webpage here

Why has modern French history been so tumultuous? How do the French Revolutionary and Republican traditions affect life in France today? Why is this the Fifth Republic? What happened to the others? What role do the media play in French life? Are French cultural issues very different from British cultural issues?

These are just a few of the questions that we will address in this introductory module. It is divided into two units: in one of these you will explore key aspects of the political, social and economic history of France, focusing on the period since the German Occupation and Vichy regime of 1940-44.

In the other unit you will investigate important cultural issues in contemporary France, focusing in particular on questions of cultural policy, education and the media. By the end of the module, you will be equipped to follow a number of historical, political and cultural modules in the second and final year.

Reading List:

Helen Drake, Contemporary France (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011)

Charles Sowerwine, France since 1870: Culture, Society and the Making of the Republic, 2nd edition (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009)


2 summative essays of 1200 - 1500 words
1 exam: 2 hours