Cover image for Biographical dictionary of French political leaders since 1870
Biographical dictionary of French political leaders since 1870
Bell, David S. (David Scott), 1947-
Publication Information:
New York : Simon and Schuster, [1990]

Physical Description:
xxix, 463 pages ; 25 cm
General Note:
"Association for the Study of Modern and Contemporary France."

First published 1990 by Harvester Wheatsheaf, Hemel Hempstead, England.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DC342 .B56 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order

Reviews 2

Library Journal Review

The editors and more than 100 contributors, all British academics, have compiled some 400 brief biographies of French politicians, writers, and thinkers who have left their imprint on the political life of modern France (1870-present). The body of the work, an alphabetical list, is preceded by a brief preface, a list of the biographees (without dates), and notes on contributors. Appendixes list presidents, prime ministers, and union and party leaders. The articles range in length from a single column to five pages (de Gaulle, Mitterand), and are followed by short bibliographies, some briefly annotated. English-language sources are given when available, and contributors are identified by their initials at the end of each entry. The index gives cross-references for full-length entries as well as individuals just mentioned in articles. Predictably, some of the most illustrious names in French political history of the last 100 years are included, as are figures less honored but nonetheless significant. All are treated objectively. The traditional involvement of French intellectuals in the political life of the country is amply represented by such literary authors as Hugo, Zola, Malraux, Sartre, de Beauvoir, Senghor, and many others. Biographees appear to be well distributed over the period. The book is equally useful as a ready-reference work, a bibliographic aid, and a convenient one-volume source of biographical information on important political figures of recent French history. An expanded introduction or preface, with more detailed statement of purpose and scope, e.g., criteria for selection, would enhance the work. There is, however, no comparable reference. Recommended for most academic and larger public libraries.-- Harry E. Whitmore, Univ . of Maine- Augusta Lib. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

This very useful work includes entries on more than 400 of the most important figures in French politics since 1870. One need not have been a politician to be included; rather, one must only have been significant in French politics in some way. Included are leaders of social movements and trade unions, behind-the-scenes operators, political philosophers, literary figures, and others who were prominent in their lifetime but have had little written about them since. Entries range from a few paragraphs to several pages in length and include select bibliographies (some annotated) of works both by and about the subjects of the entries. The index is excellent: it lists not only the biographees but also individuals, institutions, and subjects mentioned in the articles. There is no comparable work; the Historical Dictionary of the Third French Republic, 1870-1940, ed. by Patrick J. Hutton (CH Dec'86), covers some of the same major characters, but not the lesser-known ones. Highly recommended for university, college, community college and large public libraries. -P. W. Wilkin, University of Pittsburgh