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Beneath the pavement, the beach

Or in the original, 'Sous les pavés, la plage'.

Pelerin magazine, a French Catholic title, has decided to jump the gun on the vast outbreak of soixante-huitery that can be expected in about a month's time by polling French teens and twenty somethings on Les évènements of May '68.

Indicating that modern-ish history is taught in French schools or that boomer parents etc will not keep schtumm about the piece of gravel flicked at The Man back then, some 60% of those polled reckon they know the meaning of the term 'Mai '68'. Student demos (49%) and the general strike (35%) are seen as the central events. And what were the demos / strikes for?: the struggle for social justice (1) and rejecting the consumer society.

Just over three quarters think May '68 was a good thing, and 45% feel close to the values of May '68. 50% do not, and the five per cent of mouth breathers did not know. Mind you, given the chance to leap in a time machine and go back, 76% would take the opportunity (Presumably so they could bore their children / grandchildren, random strangers etc rigid with their war stories too).

And having exited the time machine, what would la jeunesse be chanting?

'Make love, not war' - 70%
'Everything is political' - 52%
'Down with consumerism' - 46%
'Every teacher is a student, every student is a teacher' - 42% (It sounds snappier in French)
'Be realistic, demand the impossible' - 41%

And so on. The 'beach' slogan was not on offer.

(1) - Anyone feel up to explaining how the soft soaping of envy into a higher virtue was ever pulled off?

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Blogger Edland said... 8:55 am

I find it vaguely amusing to see what has happened to that generation. We see the likes of Jack Straw and his merry band promoting policies which are the total antithesis of those they strove for by sitting down in universities all those years ago.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 9:38 am

Ed - I'd go further. I think it is hilariously funny.  

Blogger Edland said... 10:50 am

I would be able to laugh harder at it if they weren't being so destructive.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 10:51 am

Good point.  

Anonymous nomad said... 11:26 am

Way back in those golden days, I asked a senior colleague why it was that students seemed to be constantly causing trouble. His response was that they were the only ones that had the time.

Does that still hold?  

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