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  • Author: Arthur Goldhammer
  • Publication Date: 06-2006
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Belief in the possibility of a revolutionary transformation of French society sustained much of the political and cultural ferment in France in the quarter century following the end of World War II. Perry Anderson, in two articles published in the London Review of Books, argues that the decline of this faith has cast a pall over France, and he traces this decline in large part to the work of historians François Furet and Pierre Nora. It is argued here that Anderson neglects broader economic, societal, and cultural forces that combined to undermine belief in the transformative power of revolution and is therefore led to an unduly pessimistic interpretation of the cultural turn of the 1970s.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: France, London
  • Author: Sophie Meunier
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: France has become a worldwide champion of anti-globalization. French intellectuals have long denounced the cultural and economic shortcomings of US-led globalization, while French politicians, on the Left as on the Right, load their speeches with rhetoric critical of a phenomenon that gets a lot less attention in other European countries and in the United States. Yet, at the same time, France is a country whose economy and society have adapted well to this much-criticized globalization. Why this double-speak? Why this disjuncture between words and actions? This article explores this paradox, analyzes the role that France's double discourse on globalization has played in producing the surprising outcome of the 2002 elections, and reflects on the options open to the main political parties today.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, France
  • Author: Brian A. McKenzie
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: This article examines the promotion of American tourism to France during the Marshall Plan. The paper assesses the cultural and economic goals of the tourism program. Economic aid provided by the United States was essential for the post-war reconstruction of the French tourism industry. Furthermore, transatlantic air carriers adopted new guidelines for tourist class airfares at the urging of U.S. officials. The paper also examines marketing strategies and the creation of tourism infrastructures that facilitated transatlantic tourism. Representatives from the French tourism industry visited the United States to study American hotels and they agreed to adopt practices and rebuild French hotels in ways that would be congenial to American tourists. The paper demonstrates that French and American officials and tourism professionals Americanized the French tourism industry during the Marshall Plan.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: United States, America, France
  • Author: Suzanne Berger
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: There are intense debates in France today over globalization and its impact on democratic values and practice. The arguments retrace in many respects a much older inquiry into the compatibility of democracy and capitalism. The history of the past two hundred years suggests that despite the inequities that capitalist economies generate, the majority of the electorate has not been willing to vote out the system. Capitalism was protected, in part, by the fact that these systems were never wholly democratic, but provided constitutional protections for property. And democracy was preserved, in part, by the fact that these systems were never wholly capitalist, but in fact within national borders found a variety of solutions for blunting the impact of market forces. If globalization means a world without national borders, one may question whether this co-existence of capitalism and democracy can continue, and in fact, much of the French debate focuses on this point. This article retraces the history of the borders of France and suggests that borders are political, not geographic, constructions and as such, are far from disappearing even between the US and Canada, even within the European Union. As long as states can still regulate economic exchanges in ways that differentiate their societies from adjacent countries, borders persist. Globalization does create serious new challenges, but the stark dilemma of choosing either a world of economic openness or a world of liberal democracy does not capture the real stake and choices available to France and other democratic societies.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Canada, France
  • Author: Philip H. Gordon, Sophie Meunier
  • Publication Date: 03-2001
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Concerns about the potentially negative effects of globalization are particularly salient in France because of France's longstanding desire to maintain a universal culture and concomitant fear of cultural domination. This article analyzes the impact of globalization on various aspects of French culture-including the entertainment industry (movies, audiovisuals, and books), food, and language-and shows why the French resist globalization more on cultural than economic grounds. The article also looks at French policy responses to the cultural "threat" of globalization and argues that those policies are both less effective and less necessary than many French seem to think.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization
  • Political Geography: France
  • Author: Éric Dupin
  • Publication Date: 03-2001
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: This article examines why political corruption has become not only more visible in the past twenty years in France, but also more serious as a problem. After looking briefly at changes in the role of the judiciary and the media, the author focuses on issues of campaign finance and the economic insecurities electoral officials often face in the current political system. Psychological factors have mattered as well. Too many members of the political elite have assumed that political power entitled them to material advantages and exemption from conventional standards of ethical conduct. The concentration of power and weak boundaries between political, economic, and administrative elites have made the problem particularly acute in France.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: France
  • Publication Date: 03-2001
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: French Politics, Culture Society
  • Institution: Conference Group on French Politics Society
  • Abstract: Although political corruption in France is hardly new, only at the end of the twentieth century have public authorities made important efforts to address it. This article explains why, stressing underlying economic conditions in the 1980s and 1990s and changes in the composition and norms in the judicial, police, and administrative professions. The author goes on to argue that despite the publicity given to recent scandals, the attack on corruption remains restrained and politicians of both the Left and the Right remain ambivalent about facing the problem.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: France