France: Past and Present is the story of France – of its emergence as a major nation in the world thanks to the energy and splendid mettle of its people, and in spite of the many accidents of its history. This volume covers a broad range of topics: analysis of the political institutions, the economy, and the society of France. It outlines past and present problems and achievements, including violence, education, work, unemployment, social advantages and ills, women, and behavior. These topics are broached not only to inform, but also to inspire reflection on the present situation and action of the French. Finally this book wonders what France ought to do in order to manage safely and successfully the transition between the twentieth and twenty-first century.