The World: Two Halves of a Nation

Since the middle of the 19th century, France has been not one but two countries: the affluent and the poor. Today it is still a country divided by income, class and ideology, as the closely fought presidential election graphically demonstrated. Yet the two Frances are linked by a common materialistic concern: the bourgeoisie is intent on keeping the life-style that money allows, while the poor are hoping for a larger share of the nation's growing wealth. Last week TIME Correspondent Paul Ress interviewed two French families, one headed by a struggling Norman truck...

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