Fixing France: How to Repair a Broken Republic w/ Nabila Ramdani

9 Feb 2024 – 19:00 - 20:30 GMT
Frontline Club
13 Norfolk Place
W2 1QJ

The French Republic is Broken. Can it be fixed? Join Nabila Ramdani for a panel discussion about the challenges to which the nation must rise. The event will be followed by a book signing.

France is a country overwhelmed by idealism and one that remains incredibly glamorous – at least in the popular imagination. But its citizens are angry and dissatisfied. Why? In her new hard-hitting book Fixing France: How to Repair a Broken Republic, award-winning French-Algerian journalist and broadcaster Nabila Ramdani depicts a crisis-ridden nation.

Her stark critique draws on a wide range of political, historical and cultural factors, as well as personal experience, to highlight her country’s fault lines: not least of all a monarchical president and the candidate for a far-right party founded by Nazi collaborators gearing up to replace him. There is institutionalised rioting and paramilitary policing, while segregated suburbs blighted by racial and religious discrimination always threaten to explode.

In the words of Charles de Gaulle himself, France is a “perpetual illusion” founded on the Republican myths of “Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité” for all. Yet the country is failing to uphold these enlightened principles.

Can the broken republic be fixed? Ramdani’s book is a hopeful call for action and provides some pressing answers.

About the author

Nabila Ramdani is a French author of Algerian descent who works as a journalist, academic and broadcaster. Nabila began her award-winning journalistic career in the BBC Paris Bureau. She has since broadcast for outlets including Sky News, Al Jazeera and CNN, and has written extensively for The Guardian, The Daily Mail, The Sunday Times, The Washington Post and others. Educated at Paris VII University and the London School of Economics (LSE), Nabila has taught at the University of Oxford and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

About the panellists

Faisal Al Yafai is International Editor at New Lines magazine. He is a journalist, playwright, and partner at Hildebrand Nord. He was previously an investigative journalist for The Guardian in London and a documentary journalist for the BBC, and has reported from across the Middle East, from Eastern Europe, Russia and Indonesia. He is chairing this event.

Hala Gorani is an award-winning anchor and correspondent with over 25 years of experience. She has covered history-defining stories and events, most recently as a primetime anchor for her show Hala Gorani Tonight on CNN, and is one of the most internationally recognized names in journalism.

She has covered elections , revolutions, natural disasters and conflicts on five continents. She is regarded as an expert in the media industry, human and social rights, women’s empowerment and international affairs, especially Middle-East politics.

Gorani is the recipient of several Emmy awards and other notable industry journalism recognitions.

She is currently working on her first book – a memoir that explores the subject of identity which will be published by in February 2024.

Dr Philippe Marlière is Professor in French and European Politics. Philippe completed his MA degree in Law and an MPhil in Politics and Political Science at the University of Lille in France. Before coming to UCL, he was a Research Fellow at the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS, 1989-93) and at the European University Institute (Florence, 1991-94), where he was awarded a PhD in Social and Political Science (2000). Philippe Marlière was also awarded the Marcel Liebman Chair in political science by the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) in 2007.


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