Stefano Palombarini and Bruno AmableMar 16, 2021
The Last Neoliberal
Macron and the Origins of France's Political Crisis
Emmanuel Macron “has shown a genuine ability to strategize politically, determinedly and clear-sightedly [in] occupying the space of the bourgeois bloc. This is a space that France’s political crisis has left open for many years but that no one before him had been able to identify and represent effectively”.
So say Bruno Amable and Stefano Palombarini in The Last Neoliberal: Macron and the Origins of France's Political Crisis (Verso Books, 2021).
For three decades, the French centre-left has tried and failed to hang on to a working-class base with socialist platforms while, at the same time, appealing to the same demographic as its leadership: metropolitan, liberal and with an unbreakable core commitment to European intregration.
In 2017, Macron abandoned this effort and went straight for the “bourgeois” core of 20-25% of the electorate with the aim of building out into the traditional right in time for the April 2022 election.
Bruno Amable is a professor of economics at the University of Geneva and was previously a professor at the University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne, an associate member of the Paris School of Economics, and research fellow with CEPREMAP.
*The author's own book recommendation is Techno-féodalisme: Critique de l'économie numérique by Cédric Durand (Éditions Zones, 2020)
Tim Gwynn Jones is an economic and political-risk analyst at Medley Global Advisors.