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PODCAST: Will mass strikes bring France to a halt in the 'mother of all battles' ahead?

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PODCAST: Will mass strikes bring France to a halt in the 'mother of all battles' ahead?

As France heads into a major confrontation between the government and unions, we're back with a 'strike special' episode of Talking France answering questions like - how long will the current strikes go on for? Do the unions have the power to defeat the government? And should I cancel my holiday to France?


Host Ben McPartland is joined by Local France editor Emma Pearson, journalist Gen Mansfield and political expert John Lichfield to look at all aspects of French striking, from the current conflict to the wider history and culture of striking in France.

As France prepares for the first day of strikes against pension reform on Thursday, John told us: "I think we are in for one of France's big cataclysmic government versus union confrontations for several, several weeks."

You can find Talking France on Apple, Spotify or Google podcasts, download it HERE or listen on the link below.


As well as practical info for how to deal with Thursday's strike and how long the protests are likely to last, we're also looking at strikes more generally - is the power of French unions declining? Why does France have such a high rate of strikes? How do French people feel about the regular disruption? And is the government likely to back down this time?


We bring you some useful apps to use on strike days and answer questions from readers including 'Should I cancel my planned holiday to France because of the strikes?'.

And finally there's some useful French vocab to help you understand strikes, service disruptions and a couple of choice words to use if you get caught up in the chaos.

You can find last week's episode - where we looked at the detail of the pension reform that is the cause of the strikes - HERE, and all previous episodes of Talking France HERE.

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