Can teaching patriotism protect France? – Ideas – The Boston Globe

Robert Zaretsky argues that teaching patriotism and national values in France could make a difference in dealing with their Muslim population. Although he admits, “Singing ‘a Marseillaise’ or reciting the Pledge of Allegiance may not be enough. But if teachers can help students want to live up to those ideals, and live together, it may be some kind of beginning.” I think that Zaretsky has confused the universal ideals (Liberté, égalité, fraternité) championed during the French Revolution with patriotism/nationalism. Fostering nationalism in schools is the exact opposite of what they need to do! Instead they need to start living up to their professed universal values (something we need to work on as well). Anyone familiar with the history of nationalism would balk at the suggestion that patriotism is the solution.

Can teaching patriotism protect France? – Ideas – The Boston Globe.

The French Revolution 1830

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