Books: Figaro's Descendants

THE FRENCH by Francois Nourissier. 309 pages. Knopf. $6.95. ç

"No one appears to give much thought to revolt," writes François Nourissier in The French, which obviously went to press too soon. "Our young people are not brutal or rebellious or vicious or despairing or drugged or headed for extremist adventures. Indifferent? Yes. Nihilistic? No." Events since May seem to have proved Nourissier wrong, but curiously enough, they have in no way invalidated this splendidly instructive book. With affection and impeccable style, Novelist Nourissier (Une Histoire Française) shows his countrymen to be...

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