Eric Drott

in Music and the Elusive Revolution

Published by University of California Press

Published in print July 2011 | ISBN: 9780520268968
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520950085 | DOI:

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This introductory chapter begins with a description of three episodes that took place during the tumultuous months of May and June 1968, when the combined pressure of student demonstrations and a nationwide strike came close to toppling the French government. In addition, all three unfolded at the point where music and politics meet, although the nature and meaning of this meeting was different in each case. The chapter then sets out the purpose of the book, which is to show how the May '68 uprising and its memory reverberated through the French musical field during the “long 1970s,” a period that stretched from the failed revolution of May 1968 to the electoral victory of the Socialist Party in May 1981. The book is also about May '68 and the long shadow it cast over French culture and society. An overview of the subsequent chapters is also presented.

Keywords: student demonstrations; nationwide strike; French government; French music; French culture

Chapter.  8703 words. 

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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