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Title: The politics of deindustrialisation in France (1974-1984) : the case of the textiles & clothing, steel and automobile industries
Author: Boutefeu-Moraitis, Alexis S.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8505 1404
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2018
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This thesis proposes an original understanding of deindustrialisation which it defines as a double-sided phenomenon that involves both industrial modernisation and contraction and as a process that is actively shaped by the state. The thesis’ central argument is that deindustrialisation can be understood as a form of industrial statecraft whereby state managers endorse a selective disengagement from certain manufacturing activities in order to rationalise the country’s industry and enhance its overall commercial performance. Drawing from an Open Marxist perspective this thesis contends that states, as the political form of capitalist social relations, are an integral instant of the process of capital valorisation and as a result are constrained by the necessity to guarantee the conditions for profitable accumulation within their borders and the national economy’s competitive insertion within the global market. To substantiate these claims, this thesis offers empirical evidence from the French national archives which traces the process of industrial policy-making between 1974 and 1984 towards three sectors: textiles & clothing, steel and automobiles. In France, faced with a global crisis of overaccumulation that domestically translated into a growing trade deficit, the consecutive governments of the decade under examination sought to selectively devalue the superfluous industrial capital that impeded the competitiveness of domestic industry on the world stage. In each of these sectors, government officials were faced with a policy quandary as the planned closures and ensuing unemployment that accompanied selective disengagement threatened to ignite widespread labour contestation. Thus, selective disengagement was carried out through diverse strategies that involved to different degrees the politicisation and/or depoliticisation of industrial policy. Such strategies sought to palliate the consequences of deindustrialisation and/or transfer the responsibilities over industrial adjustment to non-state spheres in order to ensure the conformity of domestic class relations with the general objectives of selective disengagement.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD Industries. Land use. Labor ; JA Political science (General)