Presidential Power in Fifth Republic France


The French Fifth Republic Presidency has emerged as one of the most powerful executives in western society. This book is a study of how the power of the Presidency was created and maintained. It investigates the political skills of the office holders and the way in which the coalition supporting the Presidency has been brought together and sustained (and how it has been, on occasion, lost). The book's analysis of leadership in the Fifth Republic draws out the skills and manipulation of the successive presidents as well as the resources of the cultural and political contexts. Amongst the topics considered as part of the presidential system are the Constitutions, the referendum, foreign policy, Europe, May'68, Giscard d'Estaing's centrist septennate, 'cohabitation' and neo-gaullism. These issues are treated as crucial elements in Presidential power and help to illustrate the foundations of Presidential authority. The main contention is that the presidency has been created and sustained by political acts of a high order which have involved the mobilization of certain symbols, culture, and political forces.

Additional information

Includes content by:
  • D. S. Bell
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 2000


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