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France Notes

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Past questions Quotes o The Second Empire o The Third Republic Maps o France in 1871 Chronology o The Second Empire o The Third Republic The Second Empire o Bonapartism o Historiography o Development o Strategy o The court o Repression o Rural support o Opposition o Decline o The Liberal Empire o Foreign policy o Religion o Economic boom o Economic bust o The legacy of the Revolution The Third Republic o Origins o Royalism o Thiers o MacMahon o Politics o Ideology o Boulangism o Nationalism o Class o Foreign policy o Religion o Economics o The right wing o The Paris Commune o The Dreyfus Affair o Imperialism

Past questions

Was class a significant factor in French politics?
o Trinity 2013



When did the Bonapartist synthesis fail and why?
o Tutorial essay How far did Bonapartism overcome political and social polarisation?
o Trinity 2012 How polarised was the French Third Republic?
o Trinity 2011 How republican was the French Third Republic?
o Trinity 2010 'Economically backward; politically fermenting; culturally precocious.' Is this an accurate characterisation of France under Louis-Napoléon?
o Trinity 2010 How important was foreign policy to Napoléon III's domestic rule?
o Trinity 2009 What did the French Third Republic achieve by its pursuit of anti-clerical policies?
o Trinity 2009 Did the French Third Republic undermine its influence by its pursuit of anti-clerical policies?
o Trinity 2008 How great was the social transformation of France under LouisNapoléon's rule?
o Trinity 2008 How far did France's republican élite succeed in turning 'peasants into Frenchmen' (EUGEN WEBER)?
o Trinity 2007 Was Louis-Napoléon's charisma an asset or a liability for France and the French?
o Trinity 2007 Why did the case of Alfred Dreyfus become a cause célèbre in France??
o Trinity 2006 How important was foreign policy to the domestic stability of LouisNapoléon's rule?
o Trinity 2006 What troubled the opponents of the Third Republic more: secularism or democracy?
o Trinity 2005 How far did Napoléon III transform the relationship between Church and state in France?
o Trinity 2005



Quotes The Second Empire

Napoléon III was a "cretin". o Adolphe Thiers. That "because he was nothing, Louis-Napoléon could appear to be everything". o Karl Marx. "L'Empire, c'est la paix." o Napoléon III. "My position and my name impose obligations on me of whose importance I am well aware." o Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte whilst in Switzerland. I submit my actions to the judgement of "the one sovereign that I recognise in France - the people!" o Napoléon III, December 1851. "The peasant wanted to crown his legend and by his word he made the Empire." o Jules Ferry. "[W]e, who have our friends only down below, have abandoned parliament to the upper classes." o The Duc de Persigny. "It means a great deal to be one and the same time a national glory, a revolutionary guarantee, and a principle of authority". o François Guizot summing up Napoléon's appeal. A "magnificent court". o James Harris, 3rd Earl of Malmesbury. "This unfortunate Empress has been so dragged through the mud one feels almost compelled to defend her". o A Legitimist lady. "We have immense tracts of uncultivated lands to clear, roads to open, ports to create, rivers to make navigable, canals to finish, our railway network to complete". o Napoléon III. For "the peasant supports the emperor, and does not wish to hear about a change. If you ask him why, he will say 'we are selling our produce.'" o A Toulouse republican. "Are you revolutionaries? Are you conservatives?" o Emile Keller on the Italian escapade, January 1861. A 'precarious fudge'. o Robert Tombs on the Liberal Empire. To divert opinion from "irritating questions of internal politics". o The procureur général of Toulouse on the desirability of a short war, 6th October 1868. '"Era of revolutions'. Still open, for each new government promises to close it." o Gustave Flaubert. France


"I am back to my old score." o Napoléon III on the Liberal Empire referendum.

The Third Republic

The "vile multitude". o Adolphe Thiers on the people. That the Republic: "seemed dishonoured for ever". o Albert de Mun. The "Republic will be conservative, or it will not exist". o Adolphe Thiers. I am "profoundly conservative and profoundly republican". o Jules Simon. "Clericalism, there is the enemy!" o Léon Gambetta. From Vosges to Brittany, peasants were "indifferent to political debate and to issues that did not affect them directly". o Eugen Weber. That "anti-clericalism would not be an export item". o On the new Indochinese Union. 'Orléanism was liberal and conservative simultaneously.' o Maurice Agulhon. 'France must be loved and served.' o Maurice Agulhon on the unifying thread of French politics. "Why can't we have our Whigs and Tories?" o Edgar Raoul-David, 1886. The need to set up "a workers' party that is not political but socialist". o Jules Guesde. The government needed all those dedicated to a "open, tolerant, and honest Republic". o Jacques Pirot, in the Figaro, following the 1892 elections. A "new spirit" regarding Catholic affairs. o Eugene Spuller, Education and Ecclesiastical Minister. That "our policy is republican, clearly republican". o Insistence of Jules Méline in 1896. A commitment to "lay, democratic and social action". o The founding principles of the Radical Party. "Your means of action is disorder, my duty is to ensure order." o Georges Clemenceau, 1906. "France would not easily be content to count for no more in the world that a big Belgium." o Jules Ferry, 1882. That "anti-clericalism would not be an export item". o France on the new Indochinese Union.



Maps France in 1871



Chronology The Second Empire 1792 - Original Paris Commune 1801 - Napoléon I's Concordat 1830 - French take Algiers 1st December 1851 - President Bonaparte launches his coup d'état January 1852 - New Bonapartist constitution 1857 - Cyclical slump headed off by French shipyard orders; Algeria pacified 1859 - Franco-Austrian War 1860 - Cobden-Chevalier Treaty; economic situation starts to deteriorate 1863 - Elections, most major towns in opposition to the government 1864 - Strikes allowed March 1865 - Death of Emile Ollivier 1867 - French economy in freefall; World Fair 1868 - Press restrictions loosened; public meetings allowed; Lavigerie founded Society of Missionaries 1869 - Failure to find a government candidate for a quarter of constituencies; opposition 40% of votes 1870 - Franco-Prussian War 1st September 1870 - Defeat of Napoléon III at Sedan


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