Understanding public attitudes during Covid-19 in France with Polanyi and Gramsci : a political economy of an epidemiological and economic disaster
Comparative European politics, 2023, OnlineFirst
FERRAGINA, Emanuele, ZOLA, Andrew, PASQUALINI, Marta, RECCHI, Ettore, Understanding public attitudes during Covid-19 in France with Polanyi and Gramsci : a political economy of an epidemiological and economic disaster, Comparative European politics, 2023, OnlineFirst - https://hdl.handle.net/1814/76154
Retrieved from Cadmus, EUI Research Repository
How ready were governments and the public to sacrifce thousands of lives to avoid economic collapse during the pandemic? We designed a trade-of scale measuring whether the French population is more concerned with the health or economic consequences of the pandemic and administered it eight times from April 2020 to April 2021. We fnd that concern for the economy was correlated with a preference for the application of a free-market logic, and that it grew swiftly over time and uniformly across the population despite the unprecedented epidemiological circumstances. Absolute diferences in concerns correlated with material factors after the frst lockdown, and with self-perceived risk of Covid-19 infection and especially political orientation consistently over the year. Respondents who were old, wealthy, highly educated, at low risk of infection, and on the political right were more concerned for the economy than their counterparts. Older respondents’ strong adherence to the free-market logic seems to explain why economic concerns were more important among the group with the highest mortality rate. When political stance is interacted with material factors, marked divisions emerge among the wealthy, the highly educated, and especially the young depending on their political orientation from left to right. We employ insights from Polanyi and Gramsci to interpret these divisions as the potential build-up of a ‘double movement’ around the predominance of the freemarket logic in the public’s ‘common sense’.
Published online: 20 November 2023
Cadmus permanent link: https://hdl.handle.net/1814/76154
Full-text via DOI: 10.1057/s41295-023-00369-x
ISSN: 1472-4790; 1740-388X
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
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