Emmanuel Todd

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Emmanuel Todd
Emmanuel Todd 11 2014.JPG
Born (1951-05-16) 16 May 1951 (age 64)
Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Yvelines, France
Nationality France
Fields History, Demographics, Political science, Anthropology
Alma mater Pantheon-Sorbonne University
Paris Institute of Political Studies
Trinity College, Cambridge
Known for Predicting the fall of the Soviet Union

Emmanuel Todd (born 16 May 1951) is a French historian, anthropologist, demographer, sociologist and political scientist at the National Institute of Demographic Studies (INED), in Paris. His research examines the different types of families worldwide and how there are matching beliefs, ideologies and political systems, and the historical events involving these things.

Life and works[edit]

Born in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, Yvelines, Emmanuel Todd is the grandson of the writer Paul Nizan, the son of the journalist Olivier Todd (fr), and the father of the historian David Todd. Todd is of Jewish descent.[1] The historian Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie, who pioneered microhistory, was a friend of the family and gave him his first history book. Aged 10, Todd wanted to become an archeologist. He studied at the Lycée international de Saint-Germain-en-Laye, where he was a member of the Communist Youth. He then studied political science at the Paris Institute of Political Studies and went on to prepare a Ph.D. in history at the Trinity college of the University of Cambridge with Peter Laslett. He defended his doctoral thesis on Seven peasant communities in pre-industrial Europe. A comparative study of French, Italian and Swedish rural parishes (18th and early 19th century) in 1976.

Todd attracted attention in 1976 when he, at 25 years old, predicted the fall of the Soviet Union, based on indicators such as increasing infant mortality rates: La chute finale: Essais sur la décomposition de la sphère Soviétique (The Final Fall: An Essay on the Decomposition of the Soviet Sphere).

He then worked for a time in the literary service of Le Monde daily, then returned to research, working on the hypothesis of a determination of ideologies and religious or political beliefs by familial systems (Explanation of Ideology: Family Structure & Social System, 1983). He then wrote, among other books, The Invention of Europe (1990) and The Fate of Immigrants (1994), in which he defended the "French model" of integration of immigrants.

Emmanuel Todd

Todd was opposed to the Maastricht Treaty in the 1992 referendum. In 1995, he wrote a memo for the Fondation Saint-Simon, which became famous — the media thereafter attributed to him the paternity of the expression "fracture sociale" (social crack or social gap), used by Jacques Chirac during the 1995 electoral campaign in order to distinguish himself from his rival Édouard Balladur. Todd, however, has rejected this paternity,[2] and attributed the expression to Marcel Gauchet.

In After the Empire: The Breakdown of the American Order (2001), Todd predicted the fall of the United States as the sole superpower and the emergence of a multipolar world, with the rise of Europe, Japan and Russia.

In spite of his opposition to the Maastricht Treaty in 1992, Todd expressed himself in favour of the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe in the referendum of 2005, advocating a protectionist framework at the European level for the future policies of the Union.

In A Convergence of Civilizations: The Transformation of Muslim Societies Around the World (2007), written with fellow demographist Youssef Courbage, Todd criticized Samuel P. Huntington's thesis of a clash of civilizations, pointing instead to indices of a convergence in styles of life and in values among civilisations.



With an English translation[edit]

  • The Final Fall: An Essay on the Decomposition of the Soviet Sphere (La chute finale: Essais sur la décomposition de la sphère Soviétique), 1976.
  • Explanation of Ideology: Family Structure & Social System, 1985, translated by David Garrioch (La Troisième planète, 1983).
  • The causes of progress: culture, authority, and change, 1987 (L'enfance du monde, 1984).
  • The Making of Modern France: Ideology, Politics and Culture, 1988 (La Nouvelle France, 1988).
  • After the Empire: The Breakdown of the American Order {literally, The Decomposition of the American System, compare with 1976 title} (Après l’Empire : essai sur la décomposition du système américain), 2001 in French, translated 2003/2004.
  • A Convergence of Civilizations: The Transformation of Muslim Societies Around the World, with Youssef Courbage, 2007.

Without an English translation[edit]

  • The Fool And The Proletariat (Le Fou et le Prolétaire), Éditions Robert Laffont, Paris, 1979. On the pre-1914 elites of Europe, which led to WWI and totalitarianism.
  • The Invention Of France (L'Invention de la France), with Hervé Le Bras (fr), Éditions Pluriel-Hachettes, Paris, 1981.
  • The Invention of Europe (L'invention de l'Europe), 1990.
  • The Fate [Destiny] of Immigrants (Le destin des immigrés), 1994.
  • The Economic Illusion: Essays on the stagnation of developed socities (L'illusion économique. Essai sur la stagnation des sociétés développées), 1998.
  • The Diversity Of The World: Family and Modernity (La Diversité du monde : Famille et modernité), Éditions du Seuil, coll. L'histoire immédiate, Paris, 1999.
  • After Democracy (Après la démocratie), Gallimard.fr, Paris, 2008.
  • Allah n'y est pour rien !, Paris, Le Publieur, coll. Arrêt sur images.net, 2011.
  • The Origin Of Family Systems, Volume One: Eurasia (L'origine des systèmes familiaux, Tome 1: L'Eurasie), Gallimard.fr, Paris, 2011.
  • Le mystère français, with Hervé Le Bras (fr), Paris, Le Seuil, coll. « La République des idées », Paris, 2013.
  • Qui est Charlie? Sociologie d'une crise réligieuse, Paris, Le Seuil, Paris, 2015.


  1. ^ http://www.rwevans.co.uk/~r/rwevans/wevansnet04/item0042A.htm
  2. ^ Pour Todd, pas de "choc" mais un "rendez-vous des civilisations", Rue 89, 19 September 2007 (French)
  3. ^ L'idée que, sous prétexte qu'un pays est démocratique, ses citoyens, après délibération entre eux, ont la légitimité de bombarder les citoyens d'un autre pays est une idée qui va finir par tuer la démocratie.
    Les Etats-Unis sont plus dangereux que l'Iran pour la paix, interview in Marianne [1]

External links[edit]