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Ethnocentrism and the Front National Vote in the 1988 French Presidential Election

  • Mayer, Nonna
Publication Date
Jan 01, 1995
SPIRE @ SciencesPo
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One of the main political changes in the French political landscape since the early 1980s has been the rebirth of a far Right. Within a decade, support for the Front National (FN) rose from less than 1 per cent to more than 13 per cent of the valid votes. Its ideological influence is even greater, one person of voting age out of four admitting he or she agrees with the ideas of its leader, Jean-Marie Le Pen (Mayer and Perrineau 1993). Ever since its creation in 1972, FN propaganda has focused on immigrants, holding them responsible for the growing rates of unemployment and crime and presenting them as a threat for French national identity (Taguieff 1989). Whatever the election, the FN voters place immigration and insecurity among their primary voting motivations. These problems have taken a growing importance in political debate, one person of voting age out of three agreeing with Le Pen's ideas as far as 'immigrants' and 'law and order' issues are concerned. The aim of this chapter is to understand the FN's appeal, by exploring the value system of its voters and the situational and personal factors that explain it. [First paragraph]

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