France's 35-Hour Workweek: Myths and Realities

Abstract : Many Americans were perplexed when a French Socialist government introduced a thirty-five-hour workweek nearly a decade ago. It seemed anomalous, especially given the constraints imposed by globalization. How could the French accept a uniformly imposed reduction of the workweek, even if its aim was to reduce unemployment by creating jobs, and even if "the French work so little," as popular myth has it? Nicolas Sarkozy was elected president last spring with a clear program: "Work more to earn more." But what is myth and what is reality in the story of this controversial legislation? Research now allows us to provide a preliminary evaluation of its shorter-term results.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, November 20, 2012 - 8:48:03 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - 3:32:02 PM

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Philippe Askenazy. France's 35-Hour Workweek: Myths and Realities. Dissent, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007, pp.29-34. ⟨10.1353/dss.2007.0088⟩. ⟨halshs-00754196⟩

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