Contemporary France: An Introduction to French Politics and by Howarth David, Georgios Varouxakis, David Howarth

By Howarth David, Georgios Varouxakis, David Howarth

Not less than because the French Revolution, France has the peculair contrast of at the same time attention-grabbing, captivating and exasperating its neighbours and overseas observers. modern France offers an important creation for college students of French politics and society, exploring modern advancements whereas putting them in a deeper old, highbrow, cultural and social context that makes for insightful research. hence, chapters on France's financial coverage and welfare country, its overseas and eu rules and its political hobbies and up to date institutional advancements are proficient by way of an research of the country's designated political and institutional traditions, unique different types of nationalism and citizenship, dynamic highbrow existence and up to date social developments. Summaries of key political, monetary and social activities and occasions are displayed as indicates.

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They either slept in the streets or were offered accommodation by some organisation. The SDF are a group composed mainly of young people and males: two-thirds are men and 36 per cent are between 18 and 29 years old (while this slice of the population represents 23 per cent of the French population) (‘Les France de 2002’, Le Monde, 10–11 March 2002: 16). FOREIGNERS, IMMIGRANTS AND SCAPEGOATS Under such conditions of generalised insecurity, accentuated by an overall anxiety about the future of France and its way of life (almost invariably seen as unique and more or less superior to any other), foreigners easily become scapegoats.

What distinguishes this liberal output (starting with the extremely important contributions of the 22 CONTINUITY AND CHANGE: THE EVER-LASTING PAST so-called Doctrinaires) in comparison to most English-speaking liberal thought is its attentiveness to the sociological background and requirements of political practice. They had found out, through painful experience, that introducing certain political institutions was not enough to achieve certain results. The institutions had to be appropriate for the society in question, and plans to change them in the direction the legislator wished had to take into account social realities (it is quite characteristic in this respect that the term ‘class struggle’, which most people tend to associate with Karl Marx’s sociologically inclined way of thinking about politics, was first used by Guizot in his historical writing).

This was the famous trente glorieuses, the glorious thirty years, almost three decades of impressive growth between the late 1940s and 1973. Significantly, this growth had been primarily state-planned and state-sponsored, to an extent unknown in countries like the UK. This is important in terms of understanding contemporary frustrations at the state’s inability to promote similar processes and find solutions. The past has created high expectations about the role of the state in France, and today the state is seen as unable to deliver what in A SOCIETY IN PROLONGED CRISIS?

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