Articles on France

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When violence erupts, we can be tempted to make judgements about collective responsibility based on our own allegiances, rather than consistent moral principles. EPA/Ian Langsdon

Charlie Hebdo attack: when should we hold a group responsible for a member’s evil?

When should we hold a group morally responsible for a member’s evil? In the wake of the Charlie Hedbo attacks, many will demand answers about Islam’s role in promoting violence. As we brace for the inevitable…
Supporters of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo have gathered following the fatal attack. Photo: Newzulu.com.

Charlie Hebdo offends – and we must defend its right to do so

The motive behind the tragic shootings at the headquarters of satirical weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris has not yet been confirmed but it seems clear that there is a link between the publication’s…
Universities in South Africa do it… image via www.shutterstock.com

Affirmative action should be viewed in global context

“Affirmative action won’t be around for much longer, ” said one of our professors twenty years ago, advising against writing a dissertation on this topic. The United States Supreme Court’s Schuette decision…
Willy Sagnol has been accused of ‘laid-back, anti-black racism’. EPA/Etienne Laurent

French football caught offside in new race controversy

French football has again become embroiled in controversy following comments by Bordeaux manager Willy Sagnol about black African players. In a question-and-answer session with readers of a regional newspaper…
Phallus face off. EPA/Christophe Karaba

McCarthy sex toy sculpture Tree piques prickly French right

Paul McCarthy, the granddaddy of shock conceptual art, has gone and done it again. In a globally reported move, part-installation and part promotional-stunt to mark the imminent opening of Paris’s Foire…
Counting your blessings. A worker at a chocolate factory in Germany. Jan Woitas/EPA

German labour markets put Europe’s workforce in the firing line

Germany’s strategy for export-led growth has set the Eurozone up for a fall. Plans to introduce minimum wages in 2015 might be too little too late for European countries locked in a futile game of beggar-thy-workforce…
‘Memorial diplomacy’, on display in June’s D-Day commemorations, is a mode of symbolic soft power politics which uses sites of memory and commemorative events to boost relations. AAP

The WWI centenary in France and the diplomacy of shared memory

When French president François Hollande rose to deliver the keynote address for the 70th anniversary of the D-Day Landings earlier this year, he set in motion an unprecedented five-year cycle of commemoration…
In recent years, the service of troops from France’s then-colonies in both world wars has been the object of sustained presidential attention. EPA/Philippe Wojazer

Reconciliation or récupération? Indigenous soldiers in WWI

In vogue among the political left during the events in Paris in May 1968, the French term récupération refers to the danger of “the Establishment”, be it the government or a political party, seizing on…
The race remains world cycling’s crown jewel, despite the doping scandals. EPA/ Kim Ludbrook

Le Tour de France is losing traction in its homeland

July in France means tourists, sunflowers, Bastille Day and the running of the national bicycle race. The Tour is one of the most recognisable symbols of France in the global imagination. But it is an…

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