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  • Author: Gwénaële Calvès
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Il pouvait sembler évident, jusqu'à une période très récente, que la formule célèbre du juge Blackmun selon laquelle, "pour en finir avec le racisme, nous devons d'abord prendre la race en compte" n'avait aucune chance de s'acclimater en France. La culture politique républicaine, exprimée et confortée par des principes constitutionnels fermement énoncés, s'opposait à la prise en compte d'un critère de catégorisation tenu pour intrinsèquement infamant et dénué de tout contenu positif: le droit français contemporain ne mentionne la "race" que pour en proscrire la prise en compte; la seule "race" qu'il connaisse est la race du raciste.
  • Political Geography: France
  • Author: Alec G. Hargreaves
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Since the Left returned to power in 1997, there have been remarkable changes in the debate over the "integration" of immigrant minorities in France. After a long period in which political elites emphasized the challenges associated with minority ethnic cultures and social disadvantage, the spotlight has shifted to the blockages arising from racial discrimination by members of the majority ethnic population. No less remarkably, there has been a significant abatement in the demonization of so-called Anglo-Saxon approaches to the management of ethnic relations, habitually branded by politicians and civil servants as the antithesis of France's "républicain" model of integration. Whereas British and American policies have encouraged "race" awareness in combating both direct and indirect forms of discrimination and have established powerful agencies to assist minorities suffering from unfair treatment, until recently there was a wide consensus in France that "integration" policy could best be served by erasing as far as possible any reference to ethnicity.
  • Topic: Politics
  • Political Geography: Britain, America, France
  • Author: George Ross
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Le Nouvel Esprit du capitalism:Luc Boltanski and Eve Chiapello (Paris: Gallimard, 1999). Luc Boltanski and Eve Chiapello's Le Nouvel Esprit du capitalisme is 843 pages long. Its considerable heft, however, has not prevented it from being widely read and commented upon. Herein lies a mystery. Why has such a dense and difficult book struck such a chord? Perhaps the first reason has to do with its general approach. "Spirits of capitalism"-borrowing from Max Weber is intentional - refers to the ways by which capitalism, at heart profoundly amoral, is "moralized." French readers worry, and they should, that contemporary capitalism makes less and less moral sense. Le Nouvel Esprit promises new understanding, if not new morality. To Boltanski and Chiapello, individuals and groups need to acquire sufficient personal commitment, in terms of a sense of justice in operation, to allow the system to function successfully. They see three successive ideal-typical "esprits du capitalisme," each with its own particular mixture of methods of moralization. The contemporary moment, they claim, is a major change from the previous spirit to something quite new. The "justifications" that key actors use to create morally acceptable social environments - and which, in turn, help make structures happen - have been shifting.
  • Topic: Environment
  • Author: Michael J. Piore
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: This is a big, ambitious book with an intricate, engaging, and important argument. I picked it up in Paris in January and read it on the flight home. It made me happy to be an intellectual and a scholar; happy to be able to read French; happy, for the first time I can remember, to have seven and a half hours of uninterrupted time on a transatlantic flight. The book poses the question of why an active critique of capitalism has virtually disappeared in our times. The answer it provides is that capitalism itself has changed in ways that evade the criticisms that had been directed against it in the past. But it argues that these changes themselves are giving rise to a new moral framework from which a new critical perspective is emerging, and attempts to identify what that perspective is.
  • Political Geography: Paris
  • Author: Donald Reid
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Le Nouvel Esprit du capitalisme is a socio-cultural response to the neoliberal explanation of the successes and failures of capitalism in France during the last three decades in terms of individual rational actors and markets. Luc Boltanski and Eve Chiapello draw their inspiration from critical readings of sociologists who interpreted earlier incarnations of capitalism, including Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Max Weber, and Emile Durkheim. The sesquicentennial of The Communist Manifesto elicited many commentaries praising Marx and Engels for their insightful evocation of the revolutionary nature of capitalism. Starting here, Boltanski and Chiapello point to the contradictory nature of capitalism, which thrives on destruction and expansion, yet requires checking mechanisms to avoid self-destruction through the alienation of precisely those who have driven the processentrepreneurial bourgeoisie, directors, and managers. To the obvious capitalist project of continually creating consumers must be added that of selling capitalism to those producers whose allegiance to capitalism Marx and Engels took for granted.
  • Political Geography: France
  • Author: Luc Boltanski, Eve Chiapello
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Le plaisir principal que l'on peut tirer du fait d'avoir écrit un livre (qui est différent du plaisir que l'on peut avoir pris à l'écrire) est de pouvoir confronter sa propre vision de ce que l'on a fait avec les représentations qu'en donnent différents lecteurs. L'ouvrage ne trouve finalement son achèvement que dans cette confrontation entre un projet d'écriture et les critiques des lecteurs qui, par leurs interprétations, se l'approprient. Ce plaisir est particulièrement grand lorsque, comme c'est le cas du dossier constitué à l'initiative de la rédaction de French Politics, Culture Society, ces lectures, par leur acuité, leur perspicacité et leur diversité, jettent des éclairages nouveaux sur le travail accompli. Nous pouvons dire que chacune des lectures rassemblées ici nous a appris quelque chose sur notre ouvrage, ce dont nous sommes grandement reconnaissants aux quatre éminents spécialistes qui ont pris de leur temps pour décortiquer Le Nouvel Esprit du capitalisme ainsi qu'à l'équipe de la revue qui a suscité cet ensemble de textes.
  • Topic: Politics, Culture
  • Author: Bruce Kogut
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: The book by Luc Boltanski and Eve Chiapello on the new spirit of capitalism returns to the question that puzzled the social thinkers of an earlier time: How does capitalism manufacture the ideological foundations of social peace, despite its hollow spiritual core and its creation of inequities? Their argument, reminiscent of Gramsci's, is that capitalism is richly inventive in appropriating cultural systems to justify itself. To address the ills of contemporary society, one must deconstruct the ideologies that make excessive levels of stress, unemployment, and inequality appear unavoidable. Boltanski and Chiapello cite Durkheim's thesis that capitalism is marred by the insatiable pursuit of self-interest, a view that resonates with the Chinese parable of the mask with no lower jaw. The mask is the face of a god or spirit that in its greed consumed its body and eventually its lower jaw, until it was unable to consume more. Capitalism needs an ideological restraint to this logic, but is unable to generate it by its own tenets. It must borrow elsewhere to justify itself and to preserve its own survival.
  • Author: Tyler Stovall
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Tzvetan Todorov, On Human Diversity: Nationalism, Racism, and Exoticism in French Thought (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1993). Sue Peabody, "There Are No Slaves in France": The Political Culture of Race and Slavery in the Ancien Régime (New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996). Patricia M. E. Lorcin, Imperial Identities: Stereotyping, Prejudice and Race in Colonial Algeria (London and New York: I.B. Tauris, 1995). Maxim Silverman, Deconstructing the Nation: Immigration, Racism and Citizenship in Modern France (London and New York: Routledge, 1992). In the final decade of the twentieth century, few issues have seemed more central, and disturbing, to French society than considerations of race. Questions of racial tolerance and difference have led France to reconsider the cherished right of all those born on the nation's soil to French nationality, have (until its recent split) prompted the rise of the biggest new political party in France since the Parti communiste français, and suffused debates about nationality and citizenship. Such has been the importance of this phenomenon that French intellectuals recently found themselves praising, of all things, the Disney animated version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, because of its topical relevance to the plight of African immigrants seeking asylum in a Parisian church. In contrast to the traditional rosy view of France as a land without color prejudice, race and racism now seem unavoidable aspects of life in the Hexagon.
  • Political Geography: Africa, France
  • Author: Alice L. Conklin
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Post-Colonial Cultures in France, Alec G. Hargreaves and Mark McKinney, eds. (London: Routledge, 1997). Jean-Loup Amselle, Vers un multiculturalisme français, l'empire de la coutume (Paris: Aubier, 1996). In 1974 France officially closed its doors to immigrants from its former colonies and began debating how best to respect "difference" while preserving a meaningful French identity. The tepid response of the Left to the meteoric rise of Le Pen's National Front soon galvanized France's new "others" into action. A series of now well-known confrontations ensued - the Marche des Beurs, the emergence of SOS-Racisme, l'affaire du foulard, and the sit-in of les sans-papiers. In each of these cases, disadvantaged minorities and their supporters contested the legally exclusive and monocultural definition of the nation that appeared to be taking shape across the political spectrum.
  • Political Geography: France
  • Author: Tong Whan Park
  • Publication Date: 09-2000
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Journal of Korean Studies
  • Institution: International Council on Korean Studies
  • Abstract: From June 13 to 15, 2000, the first-ever summitry was held between the two Koreas since the peninsula's division at the end of World War II. The two heads of state produced a five-point agreement2 designed to launch an era of dialogue between the erstwhile enemies. As part of the agreement, a limited number of people with separated families have since traveled to each other's capital for a tearful reunion. The ground has been broken to re-link the countries by rail that would pass through the Demilitarized Zone. Bureaucrats of the two countries have engaged in a flurry of activity including high level talks and the historic visit by North Korea's defense minister to the South. Seoul's chaebols also got themselves busy to jump aboard the bandwagon heading north. And the new mood of detente peaked at the opening ceremony of the 27th Olympiad in Sydney when athletes from the two Koreas—albeit competing as separate national teams—marched together following a hastily concocted flag with an image of the Korean peninsula.
  • Political Geography: North Korea, Korea, Sydney, Korean Peninsula