The French Second Empire: An Anatomy of Political Power, by Roger Price
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- ISBN: 9780521036320 | 0521036321
- Cover: Paperback
- Copyright: 4/23/2007
This book is about a major historical figure, Napoleon III, and a political regime. It examines how Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte (nephew of the first Napoleon) was able to secure election as President of the Republic and subsequently to launch a coup d'état to establish a Second Empire. It then considers the ways in which power was exercised by the new imperial regime. Later, apparent stability led Napoleon III to engage in a difficult process of transition towards a more liberal regime; but at the point of success, the decision was taken to go to war against Prussia which resulted in a catastrophic defeat and the destruction of his regime. This is the most thoroughly researched book on the Second Empire in any language, which makes a contribution to our knowledge of a vitally important period of French history following the 1848 revolution and the intense mid-century crisis.