Languedoc Home    Introduction     to See    to Do    Holidays     Langudoc Wine     Languedoc Life    Getting There    Property      History   Geography   Weather 
Cathars of the Languedoc    Cathar Castles    Languedoc Mysteries    Languedoc Books    Languedoc Photos    Articles    Emergencies    Languedoc Guides    More Information
Become lord of the Manor... Rent a Chateau in France!
 

Living in the Languedoc:    Central Government:    Republican Principles

The original republican French Constitution was modelled on that of the USA, itself a product of the secular liberalism of the Enlightenment.  Like the US Constitution, and unlike the British one, is a written document.  As such it requires periodic revisions.  The current French republic is the Fifth Republic since the Revolution, a period which has also seen the re-establishment of French kingdoms and short-lived empires.  The chequered history of the French system, and the received opinions of the French authorities, are largely explained by the need to cling to the French Constitution as the guardian of liberties.  Without the checks and balances of an organically grown democratic monarchy, there is nothing else to cling to. Important implications are:
1)  A firm belief in the need for separation of powers (as in the USA).  Republicans are wedded to the axiomatic notion that it is absolutely necessary to separate the powers of the Executive, the Legistature and the Judiciary.  This has become EU orthodoxy too, which is why the British government felt obliged to abolish the position of Lord Chancellor.  As cabinet ministers who chaired part of the legislature and headed the judiciary, Lord Chancellors had provided living disproof of the axiom for a thousand years. 
2)  The need to convince the population of the benefits of their republican system.  As in the USA, schools and the media provide a picture of the world which accords with a particular national view. In France you can expect to hear the "Rights of Man" referred to about 100 times more frequently than in other countries.  On the other hand, you would not for example expect to see the President lampooned in the way that monarchs are in their own countries, nor to hear anyone expressing the view that the freest countries in the world are the monarchies of north-west Europe, Australia and Canada. As in other republics, national symbols are treated with a degree of reverence that can verge on the amusing to foreigners.  Most French people seem to unaware that their electoral system is almost indistinguishable from that of an eighteenth century elective monarchy. 
3)  Again as in the USA, the only real oposition to liberal secular principals come from the Churches.  Attempts to sparate Church and State in France have been even more contentious than elsewhere, and have never been fully realised.
Back.   Back to: The Rights of Man. Up  a level to the main page on French Central Government Next page: French Republican Symbols   Forward.
Languedoc Home     About this Site     Site Map     Links     Contact Webmaster     Copyright and Legal     Search site for: 
The Languedoc: property,holidays,climate,naturist beaches,wildlife,wines,history,geography and Cathar castles: the Languedoc Home Page
 Level 1 -  Languedoc Home Page: Languedoc climate & weather, holidays & vacations, tourism & travel, naturism and naturist beaches,property & accomodation, Cathars & cathar castles, food & wine, history & geography, French sports & games, mountains & and lakes, and everyday life in the Languedoc-Roussillon in the South of France.
 Level 2 - Click here to go back to the page on Living in the Languedoc-Roussillon.
 Level 3 - Click here to go back to the main page on Government in the Languedoc-Roussillon.
 Level 4 - Languedoc website. You are at level 4.
 Level 5 - Languedoc links not available from here.

Rafting.
The
French
Constitution