French Politics

, Volume 13, Issue 2, pp 121–140

A red letter day: Investigating the renaissance of the French far left in the 2012 presidential election

  • Pavlos Vasilopoulos
  • Laurie Beaudonnet
  • Bruno Cautrès
Original Article

DOI: 10.1057/fp.2015.5

Cite this article as:
Vasilopoulos, P., Beaudonnet, L. & Cautrès, B. Fr Polit (2015) 13: 121. doi:10.1057/fp.2015.5


This article extends the current literature on European far-left parties by investigating the sociodemographic, ideological and attitudinal profile of the French far-left voter in the 2012 Presidential Elections. Particular emphasis is placed on the impact of the economic crisis on the sudden electoral rise of the French far left and factors such as economic hardship, change of economic conditions, attitudes toward economic inequality and Euroscepticism. Results suggest that explanations based purely on economic factors fall short of explaining the totality of the French far-left vote, especially if compared with the other parties of the French far left. Instead, attitudes toward Europe and post-materialism are central in the understanding of the renaissance of the French far left. On the basis of these findings we reach a number of conclusions regarding the future of far-left parties in France and Europe.


far left economic crisis France minor party 

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pavlos Vasilopoulos
    • 1
  • Laurie Beaudonnet
    • 2
  • Bruno Cautrès
    • 3
  1. 1.Centre de Recherches Politiques (CEVIPOF)ParisFrance
  2. 2.University of MontrealMontréalCanada
  3. 3.CNRS – Centre de Recherches Politiques (CEVIPOF)ParisFrance

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