’burg and Beyond
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Two Bucknell student in front of the Eiffel Tower
Photo: Julia Stevens ’20
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Cameron Wade ’20 (left) and Richard Noel ’20 visited Parisian archives and libraries.
" "Paris, France
May marked the 50th anniversary of the student revolt and protests that rocked France. The protests led to a strike carried out by nearly a quarter of the working population, economic instability and political turbulence that caused then-president Charles de Gaulle to briefly flee Paris. Richard Noel ’20 and Cameron Wade ’20 spent a week in Paris this summer visiting libraries and archives to study the events of May 1968 as part of their ongoing research project, supported in part by a Humanities Center High-Impact Student Research grant.

What They Did:
“The project has evolved into a study about the relationship between de Gaulle’s political philosophy and that of the postwar French intellectuals,” says Noel, an interdisciplinary studies in economics and math major. Wade, a history and French major, insists that “the [protest] movement was a product of philosophical theories as much as it was derived from its historical context. If we did not approach this project from an interdisciplinary perspective, we would be missing a part of the story.”

What They Found:
The researchers viewed photos of the protests, analyzed propaganda posters and even spoke with a French woman who participated in the protests. A combination of good timing and smart research methods yielded more material than they ever expected. Despite progress they made in Paris, Wade and Noel still have much to do. “Plowing through the texts we’ve found and doing exegetical work will be the true heart of our project,” says Noel. — Julia Stevens ’20