Seeking a new image for French armies and military : sociological studies at the Centre d’études en sciences sociales de la défense
In reply to the need for information requested by armies in view of the reform which they are currently undergoing, the Centre d’études en sciences sociales de la défense (Centre for social sciences studies in the field of defence) has made an original contribution to the knowledge of armies and the professional soldier in France, based on three key axes in this field of discipline, all interlinked. Thus, the analysis of the position of women, present in the armies, in terms of their appointment or views on their activity, brings to light certain difficulties encountered by the military institution regarding their integration. The assignments entrusted to the armies, both inside and outside national territory, make it possible to determine the current characteristics of the military profession, in connection to their operational reality, wondering whether they modify more or less deeply their nature. Finally, the study of the relations between the armies and society shows that if the assignments mentioned earlier leave some military perplexed, they are seen more positively by the population, which leads to are defining, at least partial, of the social utility of the armies.