Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Final Research Projects

In our course on French history and politics, each student has been pursuing an independent research project across the semester.  We have proceeded from topic sheets to bibliographies and outlines, topic presentations to the class, and rough drafts.  Over the past week, each student student has been presenting her concluding findings to the class.  The final papers are due tomorrow, our last day of class!

Andrea is writing on the history of fashion in the 1920s, a pivotal decade in European women's history and the history of haute couture, as women's attire and appearance changed to reflect the dramatic social and economic changes catalyzed by World War I.

Annie's project treats the controversial modernization of the Louvre after I.M. Pei's glass pyramid heralded a new era of marketing and business for the world's oldest public art museum.

Caroline is investigating the impact of French state policy on female participation in the economic sphere, specifically the effects of pronatalist policies such as child stipends and paid maternity leave on French women's status in the business world.

Hannah's paper explores the background and impact of the Elysée treaty signed in 1963 by Charles de Gaulle, President of France, and Konrad Adenauer, Chancellor of West Germany, charting a now fifty-plus-year history of Franco-German cooperation.

Kianna's work concerns the weeks of violence in November 2005 in over 250 French towns enacted primarily by suburban teenagers following the deaths of two young men of Malian and Tunisian ancestry, who were fleeing the police in Clichy-sous-Bois, outside Paris. 

Meredith's essay focuses on the Vichy regime, which collaborated with Nazi Germany, and French participation in the Holocaust.  She looks in particular at the imprisonment of Jews in Paris in the Vél d'Hiv before deportation to the Drancy concentration camp and, ultimately, death camps in Poland.

Renee's interest in French food led her to Antonin Carême, the first "celebrity chef," credited with having created modern French cuisine at the turn of the nineteenth century.  Carême was especially famous for his elaborate pastry creations that he produced for royals across Europe.

Tessla's paper explains the significance of the French bombing of the Greenpeace ship, the Rainbow Warrior, in 1985 as the ship sat in a New Zealand harbor before intending to sail to Moruroa to protest French nuclear testing.

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