The French left is in its most explosive state for a generation. In response to the pension reforms pushed through by Emmanuel Macron’s government, the Yellow Vests, unions, students and environmentalists alike are linking up their struggles. The tactical vocabulary has expanded: strikes and official protests have been supplemented by blockades, ‘wild demonstrations’ and power cuts targeting the French elite. Meanwhile, escalating police violence has put multiple protesters in comas.
We tell ourselves this could never happen in the UK. But is that really so? For Novara FM, Richard Hames went to Paris to find out, amidst the clouds of tear gas, how the movement in France became so dynamic, how it might still grow further, and whether, and how, it might win.
Produced by Richard Hames and Chal Ravens with special thanks to Olly Haynes and the Strikewave Assembly.