Conclusion: The Left and the Republic

  • John Gaffney


The foregoing analysis of the public discourse of the Communist and Socialist parties in the Fifth Republic during the 1970s and 1980s has demonstrated that the politics of party leadership and changes in the significance of leadership are both more subtle and more consequential than has hitherto been argued or assumed. Our analysis has further indicated that the nature of party organisation and of change within it are in a complex relation to leadership, and that discourse is itself a formative condition of this relation. Furthermore, political personalism, which, as we have argued in Chapter 2, is both a discursive and an organisational phenomenon, is related to three factors involved in the political parties’ response to a presidential republic: leadership, organisation and discourse.


Party Leadership Leadership Discourse Personalist Discourse Presidential Republic Personal Leader 
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© John Gaffney 1989

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  • John Gaffney

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