Monday, November 28, 2022
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the French will no longer do anything

It was unlikely that the information would not react across the channel. The publication on Friday 11 November by the Jean-Jaurès Foundation and Ifop of a study entitled “The Lazy Epidemic” did not fail to attract the attention of Daily Telegraph.

This opinion poll showed that the Covid-19 epidemic had permanently changed the way of life of the French, their way of consuming, and that it had encouraged them to value leisure time more. It also left a great deal of fatigue: 45% of those questioned are less inclined to leave their homes than before. Almost every third French person experiences a loss of motivation.

However, the information that particularly caught the attention is the following: The value of “work” has plummeted in France for thirty years. 30 years ago, 60% of the French said that work was something “Very important” in their lives. Today, they are only 24 per cent. This drop of 36 points is much more significant than for the value “religion” or “politics”. Leisure time and the time given to private life are experiencing the opposite trend: Two out of three employees are willing to work less to have more free time.

“New heights”

“Famous for their sacred long holidays, their extended lunches and their 35-hour week, the French had an enviable reputation for successfully juggling work and pleasure”, comment on it Daily Telegraphcontinues: “However, in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, French views on work-life balance have reached new heights, with new research finding that more and more French have ‘laziness’ to work, go out and even see people.”

Lockdowns, part-time unemployment and telecommuting have reinforced the trend, reports the conservative daily London, which establishes a direct link between this sluggishness and the difficulties of recruitment in certain sectors: “This loss of motivation is glaring, as evidenced by the very serious shortage of labor in various sectors: from hotels and restaurants to transport, but also education and the hospital sector.” For Telegraph, it is eloquent in this context to note the emergence of political figures – such as ecologist-deputy Sandrine Rousseau – who claim “right to laziness”.

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