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French Legitimists and the Politics of Moral Order in the Early Third Republic

French Legitimists and the Politics of Moral Order in the Early Third Republic

Robert R. Locke
Copyright Date: 1974
Pages: 331
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    French Legitimists and the Politics of Moral Order in the Early Third Republic
    Book Description:

    Traditionally, the legitimists of early Third Republican Prance have been dismissed as historical anachronisms. To arrive at a fuller understanding of these men, Robert R. Locke has used French public archives, libraries, and previously ignored private sources to investigate the divine right monarchists and the nature of their protest.

    Professor Locke concentrates on two hundred legitimists in the National Assembly of 1871. He identifies the legitimists socially and occupationally, and evaluates their response to such problems of modernization as industrialization, urbanization, bureaucratization. and democratization. The author analyzes legitimist ideas within the context of the immediate historical situation, and contrasts the social-economic background and mentality of the legitimists with that of other French and European monarchists.

    Far from being anachronisms, the legitimists of Professor Locke's study emerge as men of diverse social-economic origins who frequently accepted economic change and innovation-men who wanted to restore the old monarchy, but not necessarily the old regime. Their characteristics, the author shows, have an affinity with those of all groups who try to uphold traditional beliefs in a changing world.

    Originally published in 1974.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-7013-4
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
    (pp. ix-2)
    R. R. L.
    (pp. 3-9)

    The terms royalist or monarchist can be applied to anybody who believes in a monarchical form of government. That of legitimist refers specifically to people who support hereditary monarchy. Legitimists are royalists and monarchists, royalists and monarchists can be legitimists, but not necessarily. In nineteenth-century French political parlance, legitimist is used to identify those who favor the restoration of the elder branch of the Bourbon monarchy, and this is the sense in which it is employed here. Technically, legitimists existed as a viable, if unstable, group during the short time span from 1830 to 1883. The first date marks the...

    (pp. 10-53)

    The history of the election of February 8, 1871, which chose the deputies on whom this study is based, begins with the reanimation of French political life during the last few years of the Second Empire. After antagonizing much of the Right by his Italian and his trade policies, Napoleon III sought to rebuild the foundation of his dynasty on a popular basis by progressively liberalizing his regime. The powers of the Legislative Corps were increased vis-à-vis the executive. The Legislative Corps was authorized to elect its own officers, to debate the “discourse from the throne,” to initiate laws, to...

    (pp. 54-97)

    A basic assumption often used in social history is that an ideology appeals to particular social groups more than to others and that it is possible to show how ideological outlooks themselves reflect deeper antagonisms that separate various groups within a body politic. Marx made one of the first attempts to establish such an interrelationship when he claimed that the Revolution had brought the political conquest of the state by a class that had been created by the industrial “mode of production” (the bourgeoisie) and consequently the defeat of an older class whose power had been based on the ownership...

    (pp. 98-139)

    Usually the legitimists’ economic background, which is the subject of this chapter, and their social antecedents, which was the subject of the last, are discussed together. Here, however, they have been separated because, if interrelated, they are nonetheless different topics. Legitimists have been considered an economically antiquated group within nineteenth-century society, a group whose political and social outlook corresponded to the backwardness of their economic function. The subject of backwardness is somewhat involved because of the very different meaning it entails for a preindustrial and an industrial economy. In the preindustrial French economy of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth...

    (pp. 140-180)

    George Orwell, in an excellent essay on Charles Dickens, touches on one of the problems that most perplexes modern man—the origins of evil and injustice in society. Orwell points out that two completely opposite views prevail on the subject. On the one hand, some maintain that evil and injustice are a product of society. The most sophisticated presentation of this environmentalist position was propounded perhaps by Marx. Marx believed that men’s ideals and values were class-based and therefore held that the behavior of men differed in a class-ridden society. In particular, he argued that greed, selfishness, callousness, and inhumanity...

  9. Chapter Five AGAINST THE GRAIN
    (pp. 181-223)

    Because few legitimists had held national public offices, they had been forced to criticize society without the power to pass effective reforms. Prior to 1871 legitimists had a voice only in the Legislative Assembly of 1849 in which they supported the successful conservative efforts to establish thejermes-écoles,the national institute for agronomy, and the Catholic reform in education that resulted in the Falloux law. The Falloux law, on which some of the deputies of 1871 worked, helped conservative-Catholic education in two ways.¹ First, the law created a Superior Council of Public Instruction and subordinate academic councils located in each...

  10. Chapter Six THE ELECTORAL DEFEAT OF 1876
    (pp. 224-261)

    InLa fin des notablesDaniel Halevy selected January 9, 1879, the date of the second senatorial electoral contest provided for by the Constitution of 1875, as the moment that marked the final passage from the old France to the new.¹ Then the republicans, after having captured a majority of the municipal councils, which chose most of the senatorial electors, won control of the Senate. With the municipalities, the Senate, and the Chamber of Deputies in republican hands, the last refuge of the “moral order” remained the person of Marshal MacMahon, but less than a month after the senatorial elections...

  11. Chapter Seven CONCLUSION
    (pp. 262-270)

    George Lichtheim wrote in a work on Marxism that after 1848 “belief in the possibility of stating valid principles binding upon all was gradually abandoned.”¹ This development did not mean that the goal of finding the “truth” was renounced, but only that the possibility of anybody having “it” within his grasp was highly unlikely. Truth became an ideal to be pursued by free men competing in the open market place of ideas. This was the liberal conception of life, one that made toleration, except for toleration of the intolerant, into a dogma because of the relative validity of any set...

    (pp. 271-277)
    (pp. 278-308)
  14. INDEX
    (pp. 309-322)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 323-323)