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Assessing France as a model of societal success

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  • Eloi Laurent

    () (OFCE - OFCE - Sciences Po)

  • Michèle Lamont

    (Department of sociology - JMI - Jamia Milia Islamia University)

Abstract

In this article, we propose a definition of the elusive "French model" of societal success and explore its usefulness for understanding the forces shaping France's future. This model, we suggest, remains "statist-republicanist": its democracy revolves around the idea of republicanism, while its economy continues to rely heavily on market regulation and public intervention. We assess France's model of societal success, which requires exploring the country's long-term assets and liabilities for human development. We argue, first of all, that France relies on a combination of a high fertility rate, an excellent health care system, a low level of income inequalities, and "de-carbonized growth"; second, that it continues to have a major liability, namely, a shadow French model of cultural membership that sustains segregation and discrimination; and third, that it experiences an important decoupling between its profound socio-economic transformations, on the one hand, and its political discourse and representations of the polity, on the other.

Suggested Citation

  • Eloi Laurent & Michèle Lamont, 2010. "Assessing France as a model of societal success," Post-Print hal-01023776, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-01023776
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal-sciencespo.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01023776
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