Africanist Georges Balandier, who argued that while Lévi-Strauss's structural analysis might be appropriate to the small-scale communities he had studied in the rainforests of Brazil-societies with relatively little contact with the outside world-it was entirely inappropriate to the analysis of, for example, the substantially larger and rapidly changing societies of the African continent. The implication of this criticism was that anthropology should resist the temptation to idealize the exotic culture as an isolate untouched by history and instead attempt to understand the difficult process of the adaptation of traditional cultures to the modern world.
A book programme, produced and presented by Bernard Pivot, on Antenne 2 (now France 2) on Friday evening, from January 1975 to June 1990 (724 programmes in all). This award-winning chat show, attracting audiences ranging from two to six million viewers, was credited with a highly significant and controversial influence on intellectual life (which was much criticized by Régis Debray). An appearance on Apostrophes could make or break a new book: the impact on sales was immediately visible in bookshops on Saturday morning. Pivot's appeal lay in his fair-minded independence, pitching discussion at a level accessible to a mass audience.
architecture, urban planning and housing after 1945
French architecture was traditionally inspired by a very strong classical tradition sustained by the state-backed École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, After about 1900, an alternative, modern architecture sprang up, partly on the basis of new, industrial techniques led by reinforced concrete. After 1914, classical styles largely disappeared, but they were replaced by eclectic treatments rather than by distinctively modern design, despite the efforts of leading modern architects such as Auguste Perret and Le Corbusier. Slow French economic growth in the 1930s contributed to this lack of clear progress. Even after 1945, reference to the past was implicit in many new buildings and planned layouts. The result was often inspired by order and symmetry, and sensitive, human treatment sometimes suffered.
Under the Vichy regime (1940-4), architecture looked back to traditional French society. After the Liberation, only the devastated areas
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Publication information: Book title: Encyclopedia of Contemporary French Culture. Contributors: Alex Hughes - Editor, Keith Reader - Editor. Publisher: Routledge. Place of publication: London. Publication year: 1998. Page number: 18.
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