That is the title of an  article by Theo Vermaelen on the latest issue of INSEAD Knowledge. 
Here is a short excerpt:


"Except for students in a special economics section, French high school students get no education in economics or finance. So one explanation for the French attitude is that the vast majority of the people have no basic understanding of economics or markets. Those who get economics training in high school probably get a muddled message. I got this impression after taking a closer look at the content of the economics courses of the last year of the lycée or high school.

The topics discussed seem more appropriate for a sociology course. Out of the seven courses of the curriculum, four have titles such as ‘Social Stratification and Inequality’, ‘Conflict and Social Mobilisation’, ‘Integration and Solidarity’, and ‘European Integration and Economic and Social Policies’. There is no discussion of microeconomics (demand and supply) or firm optimising behaviour such as profit (or value) maximisation, or discussion of financial markets or free markets in general.

The seeds of anti-capitalism and anti-Americanism can be found throughout the curriculum. In the chapter on ‘Conflict and Social Mobilisation’, after a thorough analysis of Marxist thinking, the authors conclude that the “reasons for conflict with the other social classes remain strong. Although workers participate in mass consumption they use fewer services than other classes: they go less on holidays than others, they have less access to the internet and they don't have maids or nannies.”

In short, French people are still taught today that class warfare is the nature of (French) society and will remain as long as not all classes are equal. Of course, equality is not possible, as it would require that either all maids have maids or that there would be no maids."

I encourage you to read the whole article at:

http://knowledge.insead.edu/theo-vermaelen-french-society-101108.cfm


 


Comments

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04/04/2012 03:15

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