Dictionnaire de la Science Politique

Authors: Hermet, Badie, Birnbaum & Braud
Summary: This 345-word short entry starts with the 1789 French case and briefly analyzes its further theoretical and political developments. In the French republican thought the concept is strictly correlated with its Greco-Roman conception, i.e. a public space, constituted by virtous citizens dedicating to public good in spite of their private one. In this sense res publica and civicness are strongly tight and the concept of republic is applicable to the idea of state as well as to that of nation.
During the Enlightment many thinkers (Montesquieu, Rousseau, etc...) were more favorable to monarchy than to republic, but still the republican dream could not be stopped.
The political struggles of the 19th century were impregnated with republican ambitions such as a systematic realization of institutions based on the separation between private and public, state and church, and on education as a means to form a new mankind. Of course they have been contrasted by those political movements that were not ready to lose their cultural code.