Trends in American Society: Is Our Present France's Future?
Hot off a book tour in Paris, French author Géraldine Smith discusses the provocative argument of Vu en Amérique, bientôt en France (Seen in America, Soon in France): that current trends in the United States presage the shape of things to come in her country. The author, who has lived in North Carolina since 2007, reveals "everyday America" through the opioid epidemic, the rejection of "cultural appropriation," ADHD and the medicalization of education, the loss of etiquette (why eat with cutlery?), attachment parenting, the generalization of the gig economy, identity politics, and the quest for "safe spaces." Her long-haul reportage predicts the Americanization of France, not because of overwhelming U.S. soft power, but because the same causes - worldwide competition, large-scale immigration, the end of white patriarchy - will produce the same effects. Of course, all of this with a grain of Gallic salt...
This conversation will be moderated by Deb Reisinger and is free and open to the public. Light lunch served.
Sponsored by the Department of Romance Studies and the Forum for Scholars and Publics.