In France

Christopher Caldwell, in the New Statesman reviews Christophe Guilluy’s body of work including “Le crépuscle de la France d’en haut”. It’s an examination of France but we in Britain should recognise the coming hour glass economy, the growing politics of anti-globalisation, the new definitions of identity and multi-culturalism, even in the home of secular republicanism. In France we add, the poverty of the rural economy, and the massive public housing stock. The French, like us, have an imperial past creating an immigration flow above and beyond that of economics.

He argues that in France immigration is bringing in cheap labour to act as the new servant class to the bourgeois. I can’t find the chart, but the Financial Times during the referendum campaign illustrated that immigrants to the UK were spread, fairly evenly across the skills spectrum and the point has been made very powerfully about the number of immigrants working in the NHS as Doctors, Nurses and other carers. The same is true in both Banking and Construction. Possibly an important difference, certainly I am of the view that the number of people coming here to work is based on demand and stopping them or sending them home is madness and wrong.

The article examines Hollande’s election campaign and how it sought to rebuild Obama’s coalition of ethnic minorities, graduate and post-graduates, women, youths and non-Catholics in France; arguing that this wasn;t a majority but was the core of one.

It’s a long read, but I found it worth while; there are lessons for us in Britain.

In France

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