Contemporary French Politics

Contemporary French Politics

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Contemporary French Politics

Contemporary French Politics

Read FREE!

Excerpt

One hundred and forty-two years ago the proud French Monarchy of the Old World came to the active military and naval assistance of thirteen obscure colonies that were struggling in the New World for their freedom and independence. One hundred and thirty-one years ago these colonies put into effect the Constitution of the United States and set up the federal, republican government under which they have since prospered and expanded and grown powerful; and in the same year was inaugurated in France the Great Revolution which, amid terrors and travail, was destined to uproot the hoary traditions and habitual abuses of the old Bourbon monarchy and to plant in European soil the fructifying seeds of modern and contemporary France. No wonder that for more than a century a potent sympathy has existed between the French nation and the people of the United States.

Since the schism of the English-speaking peoples in the eighteenth century, the development of the United States has been, in certain respects, more akin to that of France than to that of England. Present-day France is a country of farmers and business men and laborers, quite devoid of a privileged, land-owning nobility and of a state-supported ecclesiastical establishment; she is a country without a king, a country in which republican institutions and thoroughly democratic practices and the spirit of social equality have taken firm root, a country which has repeatedly been stirred by sincere altruism and lofty idealism. What truer description could be given of outstanding national traits of us Americans?

Despite the community of major interests and ideals . . .

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