The History of Modern France: From the Revolution to the War on Terror Quotes.

1. "since the Revolution, the French have become prisoners of the heritage of their past. The idea of the Hexagon as a model for the world is not one which many people could objectively defend in the twenty-first century, but it remains a potent reason to repel change or foreign influences. The French want to see their country as the bearer of a special mission bequeathed by their history, the Gallic cockerel crowing proudly to the world as they proclaim the historic virtues of the republican civil religion, on the basis of institutions dating back two centuries."
- Jonathan Fenby, The History of Modern France: From the Revolution to the War on Terror

2. "since the Revolution, the French have become prisoners of the heritage of their past. The idea of the Hexagon as a model for the world is not one which many people could objectively defend in the twenty-first century, but it remains a potent reason to repel change or foreign influences. The French want to see their country as the bearer of a special mission bequeathed by their history, the Gallic cockerel crowing proudly to the world as they proclaim the historic virtues of the republican civil religion, on the basis of institutions dating"
- Jonathan Fenby, The History of Modern France: From the Revolution to the War on Terror

3. "If present reality contradicts such a vision, if they prefer to reject economic modernisation in favour of defence of tradition, if their nation has fallen behind its neighbour across the Rhine, if polls in the summer of 2014 showed that 90 per cent of respondents did not believe their elected president could handle the problems facing them, this leaves them feeling deprived of what they believe should be theirs by historic right and opens them to the temptation of extremist illusions."
- Jonathan Fenby, The History of Modern France: From the Revolution to the War on Terror

4. "The republican ideal, harking back to the ‘good’ elements of the Revolution, assumes that France is a nation of progress on the side of the secular angels. But the various narratives of the last two centuries have shown that the country invariably opts for right over left with occasional eruptions to prove that its revolutionary legacy is not dead. Thus, 1830 was followed by the bourgeois monarchy when those unhappy with the system were told that the answer to their complaints of exclusion was to enrich themselves as conservatism was entrenched under Guizot’s golden mean. Within four months of the revolution that created the Second Republic, troops were liquidating the worker barricades of the June Days and, in 1851, Louis-Napoleon staged his coup. Two decades later, the Commune was suppressed with equal bloodshed. The Third Republic was slow to introduce social reforms, shied away from an income tax for decades and denied the vote to half the population. While introducing historic and lasting changes, the Popular Front collapsed after two years and Paul Reynaud set to work to chip away at its legacy."
- Jonathan Fenby, The History of Modern France: From the Revolution to the War on Terror

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