"Francois Mitterrand" provides the most comprehensive and innovative study in English of one of France's most famous twentieth century politicians. As the first political biography of Mitterrand, it views him as a reflection and a focus for understanding political life in France. Alistair Cole examines Mitterrand's achievements in the context of the structural and environmental aspects of the French political system to explore the interaction between Mitterrand's personal political development and the systematic constraints he faces.
This fascinating biography begins with a chronological overview of Mitterrand's career and moves on to develop a policy-based assessment of his presidency from 1981-1993. Alistair Cole places Mitterrand's leadership in a comparative perspective and evaluates his policies in a variety of contexts--including his role as party leader, president, dispenser of world patronage, European statesman, and world leader. Authoritative, detailed, and highly readable, this biography offers an understanding of the evolution of French post-war politics and of Mitterrand as an individual nolitical leader.