Félix Gouin

Felix Gouin
President of the Provisional Government of the French Republic
In office
26 January 1946  24 June 1946
Deputy Maurice Thorez
Francisque Gay
Preceded by Charles de Gaulle
Succeeded by Georges Bidault
President of the Constituent National Assembly
In office
8 November 1945  22 January 1946
President Charles de Gaulle
Preceded by Himself (Consultative Assembly)
Édouard Herriot (1940)
Succeeded by Vincent Auriol
President of the Consultative Assembly
In office
9 November 1943  8 November 1945
President Charles de Gaulle
Succeeded by Himself (Constituent Assembly)
Personal details
Born 4 October 1884
Peypin, France
Died 25 October 1977(1977-10-25) (aged 93)
Nice, France
Nationality French
Political party Socialist

Félix Gouin (French: [feliks ɡwɛ̃]; 1884–1977) was a French Socialist politician who was a member of the French Section of the Workers' International (SFIO).

Personal life

Félix Gouin was born in Peypin, Bouches-du-Rhône, the son of school teachers. He studied law in Aix-en-Provence.

In 1940 he was among the minority of parliamentarians refusing to grant full powers to Marshal Philippe Pétain.

During the war, he was part of the central committee which reconstituted the Human Rights League and also co-founded the Brutus Network, a Socialist Resistance group.

In 1946, he then succeeded Charles de Gaulle as head of the French Provisional Government. Gouin's tenure was arguably most notable for seeing the enactment of France’s first ever compulsory, amply funded retirement and worker’s compensation laws.[1] In addition, both the 40-hour law and overtime pay were re-established, while the comites d'entreprise (works councils) were extended to firms with 50 workers.[2] In April 1946, a statute was adopted by the French Parliament that abolished the colonial legal status of France’s four oldest colonies: Reunion, Guyane, Martinique, and Guadeloupe.[3] Gouin's time in office also witnessed a significant extension of the role of the state in the workings of the French economy, with electricity, gas, coal, and the nine main insurance groups nationalized during Gouin's time in office.[4]

Honours and awards

Government (26 January – 24 June 1946)


  1. Hicks, Alexander (1999). Social Democracy and Welfare Capitalism: A Century of Income Security Politics. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. ISBN 0801485568.
  2. https://books.google.com/books?id=TylMRbyL62UC&pg=PR13&dq=felix+gouin+social+security&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Mw_FUJCYPI-q0AWSiIHIBw&ved=0CDUQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=felix%20gouin%20social%20security&f=false
  3. http://plc.revues.org/pdf/258
  4. A History of the Twentieth Century: Volume Two: 1933-1951 by Martin Gilbert
  5. "Reply to a parliamentary question" (pdf) (in German). p. 38. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
Political offices
Preceded by
Charles de Gaulle
Chairman of the Provisional Government of France
Succeeded by
Georges Bidault
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