Capitalism and the State in Modern France

In This Review

Capitalism and the State in Modern France

By Richard F. Kuisel
Cambridge University Press, 1981
344 pp. $37.50

A careful, balanced study of the renovation of the French economy, characterized by post-1945 growth, modernization and the development of a neo-liberal managed economy. Kuisel, an American historian of France, emphasizes the gradual acceptance of central planning and state management, beginning with the economic imperatives of World War I and taking hold after the impetus of defeat in World War II. A judicious account that sees the ultimate reason for France's renewal in changes in men's minds, in a national desire to overcome backwardness in order to compete with other resurgent capitalist economies. It is ironic that this account of what is essentially a success story should appear just as France is entering a new and volatile economic stage.

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