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A three-decade period that began with the reconstruction of post-war France in 1945, which saw steady economic growth, full employment, the development of a consumer society and a baby-boom is widely known in the country as “les Trente Glorieuses”. Recurrent economic crises since have made many nostalgic of a long-gone, supposedly blissful “thirty glorious” years. But a number of historians argue that for most of the population there never was this golden age that has become a national legend. Nicolas Chevassus-au-Louis reports on the myth and reality of the Trente Glorieuses.
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