It is not necessary to be French, or to have a vast knowledge of the history, institutions and social structure of France to read and enjoy this book. Indeed, the contributors come from Britain, Canada and the USA as well as from France, and all were chosen not only for their expertise on the topics they cover but also for their experience in explaining the intricacies of French politics to those deprived, by accident of birth, of the privilege of growing up in France. The authors also represent a variety of ideological and academic views and the themes of the book reflect this diversity of approaches.
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