The Ecole Normale Superieure and the Third Republic
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The Ecole Normale Superieure was founded during the Revolutionary era to dominate the educational structure of France. During the Third Republic, the French academic elite trained at the Ecole Normale Superieure greatly expanded its national role and enhanced its prestige and influence.
In this book, the first full treatment of the social and political history of the Ecole Normale Superieure in recent times, Robert J. Smith has examined the changing world of the normaliens under the Third Republic and their new, but temporary, cultural and political importance. His comparative study of the social origins, education, political ideas, and careers of the normaliens and students of other grandes ecoles documents the segmented character of French elites and indicates the evolution of French society during this period.
Robert J. Smith, Associate Professor of History at the State University of New York College, Brockport, was assisted in his archival research for this study by grants from the Fulbright-Hays Commission, the American Philosophical Society, and the SUNY Research Foundation.