First published in 1977, France and the Coming of the Second World War investigates the policies that led to the collapse of French power.
The book argues that this collapse was the result of social, political, and economic troubles that buffeted French leaders. It uses a wealth of documents to explore common debates, such as Britain’s culpability for France’s inability to prevent Germany’s reoccupation of the Rhineland. It also puts forward the threat of Italy and the Mediterranean as France’s main preoccupation, rather than Germany and central Europe.
France and the Coming of the Second World War uses an extensive range of archival material and includes the private papers of Daladier, Bonnet, and a number of other prominent figures. It will appeal to those with an interest in the history of the Second World War, political history, and social history.
Table of Contents
Part One: The Setting; 1: Dilemma; 2: Quest for Security; 3: Wit's End; 4: Wait and See; 5: Retreat; Part Two: Personnel and Machinery of Policy-Making; 6: Enter Daladier and Bonnet; 7: The Cabinet; 8: Parliament; 9: Quai d'Orsay; 10: The Armed Forces; Part Three: Undeclared War; 11: 'Czechoslovakia 1938'; 12: 'Better Late than Never'; 13: Strategy and Diplomacy; 14: 'L'effort du sang'; 15: A Free Hand in the East; 16: Penguins and Porpoises; 17: A Change of Course; 18: Calm Before the Storm; 19: Last Days; Conclusions; Abbreviations; Notes to Chapters; Appendices; Bibliography; Index