Penn State University

Department of Political Science

PLSC 497: Politics in France

Professor Baumgartner, Spring 2008


Click here to read the syllabus

Click here for instructions for the second, third, and fourth papers.

Click here for some captivating statistics on spending by the French government over the entire 5th Republic.

Click here to download the spreadsheet with French government budget by category.

Go to the US Agendas Project to see the Federal budget so you can compare to France.

Click here to download a spreadsheet with a history of spending by the State of Pennsylvania, again to compare to France.

Click here for a link to the US Census Bureau which explains the budget categories used by the State of Pennsylvania.

Click here to see the number of work stoppages (that is, strikes) in the US since 1947. Compare to the data in your textbook for France, p. 323.

Click here for some suggested readings to use in your papers.

Click here for instuctions for the first paper. Note that the paper is due on Wednesday Feb 8, not January 30 as indicated in the syllabus. Thank the professor for that later in the term.

See a spreadsheet comparing the number of laws in the US and France on various policy topics from 1986 to present.

Click here to see some (perhaps surprising) statistics about women in politics in France.

Click here for some notes about the Presidency and the first year of President Sarkozy's term.

Click here to see a short New York Times article from February 12, 2008 about the electoral race in Neuilly-sur-Seine, the town where President Sarkozy was mayor from 1983 to 2002 (and where he had earlier been elected to the city council at age 22 in 1977).

Click here to see a (very long) New York Times Magazine article from February 3, 2008 giving a portrait of the French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bernard Kouchner. He was the founder of Doctors without Borders.

Click here to see a story from Le Monde from February 2, 2008 about a dispute caused as a Paris university has proposed increasing its tuition from about 400 euros ($600) to 1,650 euros ($2,500). That is, per year! If you can't read French that's fine, we can explain it in class.

Click here to see a New York Times article from January 29, 2008 on the US bail bond system, and how unusual that is in comparative perspective.

Click here to see a New York Times article from January 13, 2008 on the accumulation of mandates.

Click here to see a New York Times article from January 13, 2008 on President Sarkozy's girlfriend (it's got political ramifications)

Click here for the Wikipedia site on Politics in France

Read the French Constitution. You don't have to memorize it, but it's not a bad idea. While you're at it, read the US Constitution and Bill of Rights as well.

French Prime Minister's site, which has links to all the government ministries

Public opinion survey data from France, including Presidential and Prime Ministerial popularities (in French, sorry)

Some relevant statistics on French population, immigration, and the economy.

The US Federal Budget in historical perspective.

Latest French sports star, Jo Wilfried Tsonga (wiki page)

Read the section on "representing multicultural France" in the wiki page about the French national soccer team.