Edgar Faure: Wikis


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Edgar Faure

In office
20 January 1952 – 8 March 1952
Preceded by René Pleven
Succeeded by Antoine Pinay
In office
23 February 1955 – 1 February 1956
Preceded by Pierre Mendès-France
Succeeded by Guy Mollet

Born 18 August 1908
Died March 30, 1988 (aged 79)
Political party Radical

Edgar Faure (18 August 1908 – 30 March 1988) was a French politician, essayist, historian, and memoirist.



Faure was born in Béziers, Languedoc-Roussillon. He trained as a lawyer in Paris and became a member of the Bar at 27, the youngest lawyer in France to do so at the time. While living in Paris, he became active in Third Republic politics, and joined the Radical Party.

During the German occupation of World War II, he joined the French Resistance in the Maquis, and in 1942 fled to Charles de Gaulle's headquarters in Algiers, where he was made head of the Provisional Government of the Republic's legislative department. At the end of the war he served as French counsel for the prosecution at the Nuremberg Trials.

In 1946, he was elected to the French Parliament as a Radical. While the popularity of his party declined to less than 10 per cent of the total vote, none of the other parties was able to gain a clear majority. As such, early on, Faure’s party often played a disproportionately important role in the formation of French governments. In this, he led the cabinet in 1952 and from 1955 to 1956. Faure was a leader of the more conservative wing of the party, opposing the party's left under Pierre Mendès-France.

Faure's views changed during the Fourth Republic, and after being initially opposed to the Fifth Republic (he voted against presidential election by universal suffrage in the 1962 referendum), he eventually became a Gaullist. De Gaulle's party, the Union for the New Republic, sent him on an unofficial mission to the People's Republic of China in 1963. In government he served in successive ministries: Agriculture (1966-1968), National Education (1968-1969, where he was responsible for pushing through reform of the universities), and Social Affairs (1972-1973). He declined to be a candidate at the 1974 presidential election, and supported Valéry Giscard d'Estaing against the Gaullist candidate Jacques Chaban-Delmas.

He had the reputation of a careerist and the nickname of "weathercock". He replied with humour that "it is not the weathercock which turns; it is the wind!".

He was a member of the National Assembly for the départment of Jura from 1946 to 1958, and for the départment of Doubs from 1967 to 1980. He presided over the French National Assembly from 1973 to 1978. He was a Senator from 1959 to 1967 for Jura, and again in 1980 for Doubs. In 1978 he became a Member of the Académie française.

On the regional, departmental and local levels, Edgar Faure was mayor of Port-Lesney (Jura) from 1947 to 1971, and from 1983 to 1988, and mayor of Pontarlier between 1971 and 1977; he served as president of the General Council of the Jura départment from 1949 to 1967, then member of the General Council of the Doubs from 1967 to 1979, president of the council of the Franche-Comté région (1974-1981, 1982-1988).

Edgar Faure was buried at Cimetière de Passy, Paris.

Political career

Governmental functions

President of the Council (Prime minister) : January-February 1952 / February-December 1955

Secretary of State for Finances : 1949-1950

Minister of Budget : 1950-1951

Minister of Justice : 1951-1952

Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs : 1953-1955

Minister of Foreign Affairs : January-February 1955

Minister of Finance, Economic Affairs and Planning : May-June 1958

Minister of Agriculture : 1966-1968

Minister of National Education : 1968-1969

Minister of State, Minister of Social Affairs : 1972-1973

Electoral mandates

President of the National Assembly of France : 1973-1978

Member of the National Assembly of France for Doubs : Elected in 1967, 1968, but he remains minister / 1973-1980

Member of the National Assembly of France for Jura : 1946-1958

Senator of the Jura (departement) : 1959-1966 (Became minister in 1966)

Senator of the Doubs : 1980-1988 (He died in 1988)

President of the Regional Council of Franche-Comté : 1974-1981 / 1982-1988 (He died in 1988)

Mayor of Port-Lesney : 1947-1970 / 1983-1988 (He died in 1988)

Mayor of Pontarlier : 1971-1977

President of the General council of the Jura : 1949-1967

General councillor of the Jura (departement) : 1967-1979


He published the following books:

  • Le serpent et la tortue (les problèmes de la Chine populaire), Juillard, 1957
  • La disgrâce de Turgot, Gallimard, 1961
  • La capitation de Dioclétien, Sirey 1961
  • Prévoir le présent, Gallimard, 1966
  • L'éducation nationale et la participation, Plon, 1968
  • Philosophie d'une réforme, Plon, 1969
  • L'âme du combat, Fayard, 1969
  • Ce que je crois, Grasset, 1971
  • Pour un nouveau contrat social, Seuil, 1973
  • Au-delà du dialogue avec Philippe Sollers, Balland, 1977
  • La banqueroute de Law, Gallimard, 1977
  • La philosophie de Karl Popper et la société politique d'ouverture, Firmin Didot, 1981
  • Pascal: le procès des provinciales, Firmin Didot, 1930
  • Le pétrole dans la paix et dans la guerre, Nouvelle revue critique 1938
  • Mémoires I, "Avoir toujours raison, c'est un grand tort", Plon, 1982
  • Mémoires II, "Si tel doit être mon destin ce soir", Plon, 1984
  • Discours prononcé pour la réception de Senghor à l'Académie française, le 29 mars 1984



First ministry (20 January - 8 March 1952)

  • Edgar Faure - President of the Council and Minister of Finance
  • Georges Bidault - Vice President of the Council and Minister of National Defense
  • Henri Queuille - Vice President of the Council
  • Robert Schuman - Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Pierre Pflimlin - Minister for the Council of Europe
  • Maurice Bourgès-Maunoury - Minister of Armaments
  • Charles Brune - Minister of the Interior
  • Robert Buron - Minister of Economic Affairs and Information
  • Pierre Courant - Minister of Budget
  • Jean-Marie Louvel - Minister of Industry and Energy
  • Paul Bacon - Minister of Labour and Social Security
  • Léon Martinaud-Deplat - Minister of Justice
  • André Morice - Minister of Merchant Marine
  • Pierre-Olivier Lapie - Minister of National Education
  • Emmanuel Temple - Minister of Veterans and War Victims
  • Camille Laurens - Minister of Agriculture
  • Louis Jacquinot - Minister of Overseas France
  • Antoine Pinay - Minister of Public Works, Transport, and Tourism
  • Paul Ribeyre - Minister of Public Health and Population
  • Eugène Claudius-Petit - Minister of Reconstruction and Town Planning
  • Roger Duchet - Minister of Posts, Telegraphs, and Telephones
  • Édouard Bonnefous - Minister of Commerce
  • Jean Letourneau - Minister of Partner States
  • Joseph Laniel - Minister of State
  • François Mitterrand - Minister of State

Second ministry (23 February 1955 - 1 February 1956)

  • Edgar Faure - President of the Council
  • Antoine Pinay - Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Pierre Koenig - Minister of National Defense and Armed Forces
  • Maurice Bourgès-Maunoury - Minister of the Interior
  • Pierre Pflimlin - Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs
  • André Morice - Minister of Commerce and Industry
  • Paul Bacon - Minister of Labour and Social Security
  • Robert Schuman - Minister of Justice
  • Paul Antier - Minister of Merchant Marine
  • Jean Berthoin - Minister of National Education
  • Raymond Triboulet - Minister of Veterans and War Victims
  • Jean Sourbet - Minister of Agriculture
  • Pierre-Henri Teitgen - Minister of Overseas France
  • Édouard Corniglion-Molinier - Minister of Public Works, Transport, and Tourism
  • Bernard Lafay - Minister of Public Health and Population
  • Roger Duchet - Minister of Reconstruction and Housing
  • Édouard Bonnefous - Minister of Posts
  • Pierre July - Minister of Moroccan and Tunisian Affairs


  • 6 October 1955 - Pierre Billotte succeeds Koenig as Minister of National Defense and Armed Forces. Vincent Badie succeeds Triboulet as Minister of Veterans and War Victims.
  • 20 October 1955 - Pierre July leaves the Cabinet and the office of Minister of Moroccan and Tunisian Affairs is abolished.
  • 1 December 1955 - Edgar Faure succeeds Bourgès-Maunoury as interim Minister of the Interior.
Political offices
Preceded by
Charles Spinasse
Minister of Budget
Succeeded by
Pierre Courant
Preceded by
René Mayer
Minister of Justice
Succeeded by
Léon Martinaud-Deplat
Preceded by
René Pleven
Prime Minister of France
Succeeded by
Antoine Pinay
Preceded by
René Mayer
Minister of Finance
Succeeded by
Antoine Pinay
Preceded by
Maurice Bourgès-Maunoury
Minister of Finance
Succeeded by
Robert Buron
Preceded by
Minister of Planning
Succeeded by
Robert Buron
Preceded by
Pierre Mendès-France
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Antoine Pinay
Preceded by
Pierre Mendès-France
Prime Minister of France
Succeeded by
Guy Mollet
Preceded by
Maurice Bourgès-Maunoury
interim Minister of the Interior
Succeeded by
Jean Gilbert-Jules
Preceded by
Pierre Pflimlin
Minister of Finance, Economic Affairs, and Planning
Succeeded by
Antoine Pinay
Preceded by
Edgard Pisani
Minister of Agriculture
Succeeded by
Robert Boulin
Preceded by
François-Xavier Ortoli
Minister of National Education
Succeeded by
Olivier Guichard
Preceded by
Minister of Social Affairs
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Achille Peretti
President of the National Assembly
Succeeded by
Jacques Chaban-Delmas
Cultural offices
Preceded by
André François-Poncet
Seat 18
Académie française

Succeeded by
Michel Serres


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