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World Talk Series – Cardiff University MLANG – Oh Lord, Emmanuel – Macron’s Fall From Grace? By Dr Nick Parsons – 25/10/2017

  Delivered by experts from Cardiff University’s School of Modern Languages, the World Talk Lecture Series is a new series of talks on topics of current interest in various countries around the world.   Dr Nick Parsons – Biography Nick Parsons completed his PhD, comparing French and British industrial relations, at the London School of Economics. After teaching positions in several French and British universities, he joined the French Department in the University of Cardiff in 1991. He is now Reader in French and teaches courses on translation, French politics and the French labour movement. His research interests focus on French and European politics, industrial relations and social policy. He has published many book chapters and journal articles on these issues and is the author of French Industrial Relations in the New World Economy among other titles.   Abstract: In May 2017, Emmanuel Macron won the French presidential elections with a large majority over his far-right rival Marine Le Pen, and his La République en Marche party followed this by securing a large majority in the French parliament. At the time, he was hailed as the saviour of France, and potentially of a Europe confronted with right-wing populism. Just a few months later, however, his popularity has dwindled and he is facing street protests. How can this be explained and what does it mean for his project to reform France and Europe?   Dr Nick Parsons began his talk with an introduction to French President Emmanuel Macron. He said that he just didn’t know what was going to happen to him. Academics find it difficult to predict the future. He cannot understand why the change in French Labour laws has not led to greater strike action as of yet. Macron has a sort of self-projection – He likens himself to some kind of God. Hence the title of the lecture. It is strange to see why somebody who came to power on a wave of adulation should find himself so low in opinion polls. Macron is only 39 years old and entered the Presidential race late on and managed to secure a landslide victory in Parliament. Macron’s victory in 2017 saw him defeat Marine Le Pen in the second round of Presidential elections, winning 66% of the vote. In Parliamentary elections his Party – La République En Marche (LREM) gained an absolute majority in the National Assembly with 308 of…

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