Below you can enjoy the beautiful photos of how Life in France looked like in the early 30s during the Great Depression.
The Great Depression affected France from about 1931 through the remainder of the decade. The crisis affected France a bit later than other countries, hitting around 1931. While the 1920s grew at the very strong rate of 4.43% per year, the 1930s rate fell to only 0.63%.The depression was relatively mild: unemployment peaked under 5%, the fall in production was at most 20% below the 1929 output; there was no banking crisis.The depression had some effects on the local economy, which can partly explain the 6 February 1934 crisis and even more, the formation of the Popular Front, led by SFIO socialist leader Léon Blum, who won the election of 1936.
The distress of the population had political consequences. A riot on 6 February 1934 led to the fall of the government and a nation which had traditionally leaned to the right elected the socialist Popular Front government in 1936.
The Popular Front, an alliance of Socialists and Radicals with support outside the government of the Communists, was led by Léon Blum. The Popular Front introduced many measures such as the 40-hour working week and holidays with pay, but Blum felt handicapped in introducing more than limited changes to the economy because of his dependence on the more right-wing Radicals. This did little to placate a population anxious for change and a wave of strikes broke involving two million workers Factories were occupied and membership of the Communist party rose to 300,000 in 1937.
On the night of 7–8 June 1936, employers and unions signed the Matignon Agreements by which they raised wages by 7 to 15 percent to increase workers’ buying power, to stimulate the economy and to bring an end to the strikes. Blum brought in measures to control cereal prices, to insist that the Banque de France place the national interest above that of the shareholders, and nationalised the armaments industry. That upset the Left, which saw too much legislation, and did nothing to please the Right, which believed that state involvement in a capitalist economy would bring about disaster.