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Page history last edited by dksmith@eiu.edu 1 year, 8 months ago

Le Cas 68

Le Cas 68 refers to a period of time in France spanning from late March until June. It was a period of much social unrest for the country and what started as a student protest in opposition to the capitalist systems of the university transformed into one of the biggest social movements contemporary France has ever seen. 

Following the end of the Second World War in France, the country experienced a period of great economic growth, known as "Les Trentes Glorieuses", or the Thirty Glorious Years. Wages increased by two and a half times during the 1960's and the number of people who owned a car doubled to sixty percent of the population. Between 1946 and 1968 the population increased from 40.5 million to 49.7 million people, and during the sixties, the new wave of children were of age to go to university or enter the workforce. Due to the surplus of students, the University of Paris was forced to open a new campus in Nanterre, opening in 1963. However, when the campus was opened, it was not finished, and in 1968 the library was still unfinished. This meant the students on the Nanterre campus, who were already living miles away from the city centre in the middle of a shanty town, had to make the best of poor public transport to visit the main library in the Latin Quarter. Many came to believe they were the victims of an authoritarian mentality, symbolised by President de Gaulle, some started to organise rallies and discussions to protest the outdated capitalist values of the university, sparking protests up and down the country.

Nearly every day during this time of protest can be marked with a significant event, and the group is going to discuss the events of 22nd March, the occupation of the administrative building which kick-started the entire movement, and 3rd May, the first riot.

 

 

Group members: Dona Ali, Esther Gyan-Debrah, Becca Hix, Kate Jenkins, Annika Weinmann

 

 

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