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FRANCE-Socialism of the French Variety

FRANCE Socialism of the French Variety Salil Sarkar THE euphoria which greeted Francois Mitterand's triumph in May-June 1981 reflected more a sign of relief among the French at the downfall of the corrupt right-wing coalition ruling France since 1958 than clear cut adhesion or even popular comprehension of the French socialists' hazy ideas on social change. Besides, the preceding government's failure to hold France's social and economic fabric together in the present critical period was proving frightful to the dominant sections of society. Radical change was anyway ruled out, as much by a variety of objective factors as by socialist and communist canalising of popular discontent along respectable constitutional lines. As to whether the Left victory in France is here to stay or is in mere conformity to the seesaw pattern of government alteration visible in the western world for the last few years, time alone will tell.

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