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A Stranger in Paris

Germany's Role in Republican France, 1870-1940

Allan Mitchell†

104 pages, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-84545-125-7 $24.95/£17.00 Pb Published (January 2006)



In this compact and tightly argued essay, the author maintains that the French Third Republic - and European history during this period in general - can only be understood if particular attention is paid to the special relationship that existed between France and Germany. The experience of the French people was so intimately related to that of its closest neighbor that a bilateral perspective becomes unavoidable. Without the unifying theme of Germany's crucial role in acting upon and within the French Republic, this story would become a much more random tale of events. After 1870, an autonomous national history of France is no longer possible.

Allan Mitchell received his PhD from Harvard in 1961 and then taught at Smith College (1961-1972) and the University of California (1973-1993). He recently published three books: a paperback edition of The Great Train Race: Railways and the Franco-German Rivalry, 1815-1914 (Berghahn Books, 2006); Rêves Parisiens. L’échec de projets de transport public en France aux XIXe siècle (Ponts et Chaussées, Paris, 2005); and Nazi Paris: The History of an Occupation, 1940-1944 (Berghahn Books, 2008).

Subject: 18th/19th Century History 20th Century History
Area: France Germany



Chapter 1. An Unstable Past
Chapter 2. An Improvised State
Chapter 3. A Voluntarist Ethic
Chapter 4. A Flagging Demography
Chapter 5. A Stagnant Economy
Chapter 6. A Sexist Tradition
Chapter 7. An Educated Elite
Chapter 8. A Xenophobic Style
Chapter 9. A Socialist Revival
Chapter 10. A Strange Defeat?


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