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Fragmented FranceTwo Centuries of Disputed Identity$
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Jack Hayward

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199216314

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199216314.001.0001

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French Identity: The National Search for Retrospective Legitimacy and Unanimity

French Identity: The National Search for Retrospective Legitimacy and Unanimity

Chapter:
(p.41) 1 French Identity: The National Search for Retrospective Legitimacy and Unanimity
Source:
Fragmented France
Author(s):

Jack Hayward (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199216314.003.0002

The French sense of national identity derives from legitimizing myths and symbols rather than from the divergent realities that operate within shifting territorial frameworks of reference. National heroes are commemorated in the Pantheon, statues, and state funerals while the people are personified in the secular figure of Marianne as against the Right's Joan of Arc. Roman Catholicism's link with the Monarchy historically linked claims to religious universality and national specificity. Conscription and literacy in French language reinforced national-building.

Keywords:   symbols, Pantheon, Marianne, Catholicism, conscription, literacy

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