Societal issues All books
How does a traditionally-educated Catholic become a committed doctor? How do the resistance, the fight for abortion and against all forms of intolerance, intimate relationships with world leaders from General de Gaulle to the Shah of Iran and travels from Liban to Saudi Arabia, combine to create an extraordinary personality? A worldwide specialist in arterial hypertension, Paul Milliez (1912-1994) was the honorary dean of faculty at Broussais Hotel-Dieu.
Why do some women give birth anonymously so that their child is instantly adopted? A pedopsychoanalyst, Catherine Bonnet recounts the heart-breaking testimonies of these suffering women whose single gesture of love is to protect their child from the violence within themselves. A fresh look at the foundations of maternity and of filiation. Catherine Bonnet is a pedopsychoanalyst.
After meeting Gregory Pincus, the inventor of the pill, E. Baulieu, a young researcher and hormone specialist, found himself at the heart of one of society s most burning controversies: contraception. This is his story; his own contribution to contraception, RU 486, the first contragestive pill, and his reflections on the ethical debate it provoked.
Can dual parental responsibility outside marriage be recognized as a principle by law? I. Théry believes that all controversies on divorce are basically debates on marriage. Our representations of the relationships between the individual and society, the private and public realms, are destabilized in this insecure period of unmarriage . The psycho-social drift of justice increases further when we consider the true sufferers of divorce court battles: the children.
A non-practicing Jew, Manès Sperber learned to read the Bible at the age of three and continued to re-read it until the end of his life. Neither religious, nor a militant Zionist, nor an aethiest, nor aligned with any cultural Judaism, he professes as his only faith a "religion of good memory." His is a Judaism lived as humanism and as an ethic, as a refusal of all idolatry, of exclusion of others, and a constant combat against hate of any kind. It is a profound attachment to the Israelite nation and a prudent attitude towards the State of Israel that Sperber illustrates in these brilliant essays prefaced by Elie Weisel, where analysis of Jewish thought and identity walk hand in hand with the eternal question: Why anti-semitism?
Adoption and medically assisted procreations reflect the same suffering and ask the same questions. In both cases, the institution, in the name of a mistaken conception of filiation, weighs upon the children's head with an absolute secrecy as to its biological origins. The authors show in this book the consequences this secrecy has upon the psychology of children and parents.
Is our agriculture moribund and our farmers condemned? Not necessarily. Christian Jacob's work tells the story of the path taken by a young farmer, while taking a critical look at both French and European agricultural politics and the snares of GATT. He argues that, rather than protect the rural world, it is necessary above all to help modernize it by providing methods that allow for increased income and sharpened competiveness. Christian Jacobs was the President of the Centre National des Jeunes Agriculteurs. He is currently a deputy in the European Parliament.
What should be done about neglected suburbs, the bedroom towns, dehumanized, and deregulated ? When we are faced with buildings in ruins, with wasteland and concrete deserts ? The answer is to stop trying to fix the obvious defects of these surburbs and instead concentrate on the heart of the town, in the common space, which must take on the changes made and symbolise an identity. Jean-Louis André, graduate of the Ecole normale supérieure, is a journalist. He has notably published with Ricardo Bofill, The Spaces of A Life.
"The mouth is beautiful. Everything starts with the mouth, from the first scream to the first sucking, from the first love kiss to the last farewell kiss. It is possible to view it only as an obscure hole or a devouring machine. It becomes more difficult when, from the labial to the short syllabe, it shapes itself as an instrument for language or music. Then, new questions are raised, especially regarding its relation to the cerebral systems." Claude Olievenstein
What is there in common between all my designs ? What meaning can I give today to my architecture ? Without doubt, that of a desire to organise space. Due to an apprenticeship in perception, observation, and geometrisation of nature, in addition to a historical journey, I have learnt that in order to go past the initial momentum, I have to acquire the mastery of a whole new language." Ricardo Bofill Ricardo Bofill is probably one of the most famous, yet most controversial architects of his time. In this book illustrated with pictures and plans, he delivers an analysis of his art which amounts to an invitation to read the city.
The 20th century has been marked by the growing awareness of the unbearable gap between developed and under-developed countries. And the most outstanding fact of the next century will probably be the worsening in this imbalance. In order to find a solution to the under-development scandal, Alain Peyrefitte attempts to understand the miracle of development. He examines the successive miracles which have allowed a part of humanity to pull through the turns of dictatorship or anarchism, violence and destitution.
French public services need to be modernised. In their present position, they incarnate the Welfare State and its grand projects. They are now being challenged by the opening up of the market, the fall of the controlled economy, deregulation, and privatisations. An open economy now rules the network industries, such as energy, transport, telecommunications, and collective services. Can we really just leave isolated and without a future this cornerstone of our society which represents all at once the infrastructure of the competitive economy, great technical achievements, the republican conception of social equality and the cohesion of the country ? A result of the reflections of the Network Plan 2010 group, led by Christian Stoffaës, the director of the company Elecricité de France, this work identifies the currents of change, assesses the situation in other countries, and traces an outline of a significant project to reform the State. In co-edition with La Documentation française.
With The Society of Confidence, and Of the Economic Miracle, Alain Peyrefitte has illustrated that growth is not primarily founded on the material wealth of a nation, capital, or even on work. Development is intrinsically linked to mentalities and values, which are the essential elements of economic, political and social modernity. Using this thesis as a starting point, the Institute of France organised a conference which brought together economic and technological historians, sociologists, criminologists, and experts from across the world, amongst which were R.Boudon, S.Eisenstadt, D.Landes, and S.Lipset. The wide spectrum of debate runs from the history of religious mentalities (P. Chaunu, J.Delumeau), to penal philosophy (D. Szabo). The comparative outlook of this book allows the reader an insight into the hidden depths of confidence, from Switzerland (J.-F. Bergier), to Japan (Terushi Hara), right through to the Third World (P. Moussa).
What use do couples serve? How can a solid couple be distinguished from a fragile one? Is 'living together' preferable to marriage? How can a healthy balance be maintained between intimacy and autonomy? How can passion be made to last? Can shaky bonds be salvaged? When should a therapist be consulted and how can the most suitable therapy for a specific case be chosen? At a time when the couple as a unit is undergoing a severe crisis, this book demonstrates that if every love story carries with it a risk, happiness within the couple is nevertheless possible. Willy Pasini is the founder of the European Federation of Sexology. He teaches psychiatry and medical psychology at the University of Geneva.
What will France be like in twenty years ? Faced with the fear of the future, with the current unease and confusion of French citizens, we need to change the way we look at things. We must stop asking ourselves about individualism in our society and look for answers to the mounting solitude. Stop theorizing about immigration problems and find the keys to demographic evolution. Stop fearing the invasion of the immaterial and start looking for the the new social fabric of tomorrow. We must suggest some possible plans of action and thought processes, provide some sketches of tomorrow's France, among the risks and hopes, to get some new perspectives.
On one hand, men exploit, manipulate and slaughter animals. On the other hand, they let animals interfere with their lives, pollute them, and sometimes dominate them. Since the classical Age, Man has sought to define himself in his opposition to animals. Claiming for himself the most noble faculties - consciousness, thought, esthetic sense, morality - he represses his own animal side, notably his sexuality. But Florence Burgat goes beyond this negative statement. She walks in Jean-Jacques Rousseau's steps, claiming that men, like animals are sensitive beings, liable to suffer. On this basis, she proposes a new morality. Florence Burgat is a philosopher, and works at the Laboratory of Social Anthropology of the College of France.
The changes which have come to be in the second half of the 20th century have taken women a long ways from the profile adopted by their mothers. Do all these transformations lead us to trace the portrait of a woman who has become a clone of men ? We can ask ourselves this question when we remember the arguments of feminists in the 70's employing the "egalitarian" themes of Simone de Beauvoir. More recently, some have gone so far as to announce the coming of an "androgynous" society. But what do the women and the men of this country think about all this ? How do women see themselves in relation to men ? How do they define themselves and how do they describe the men of their lives ? A very pointed realization of today's female identity. Janine Mossuz-Lavau is Director of Research at the CNRS.