JP Fitoussi authors new book at LLL: Comme on nous parle
- Pile of hardcover books on table with open book on top
Jean Paul FITOUSSI has authored a book entitled "Comme on nous parle. L’emprise de la Novlangue sur nos sociétés” at Les liens qui libèrent (LLL) that investigates the stranglehold of a neo-Newspeak on our societies. Breaking with his internationally acclaimed academic research, Jean-Paul FITOUSSI’s new book is a plea for the reconstruction of language. Description.
“We are caught in a noose, without even realising it, of a new language. A language that confiscates words or alters and reverses their meaning in order to insidiously impose a predigested and exclusive way of thinking much in the same way as George Orwell’s “Newspeak” in his seminal work 1984. This book...investigates today’s Newspeak at a moment in time when facts of an incredibly violent nature call upon us to do our duty to explain them in a language that is at last spirited and liberated so that we do not become merely the play things of a destiny we have not chosen.”
Translated from the editor’s frontpiece
Jean-Paul FITOUSSI, Professor Emeritus, wonders: “Why are we told over and over again that unemployment is unacceptable but allow it to persist? Why are we told that work is our destiny but have failed to attach to it any real value for so long? Why is it that we have discarded all the instruments of sound economic policy-making to limit ourselves – at least in Europe – to the so-called structural policies whose objectives are, we come to understand in the end, to reduce social protection? Why do we accept that inequalities continue to grow disproportionately all the while purporting to fight them?”
For Dr Fitoussi it is “(t)he way in which we are being told about economic, social and even political issues…” that prevents us from “… understanding what is actually being said to us. And lesser still about the events that are hurting us.” A neo-Newspeak has set us a “political trap” that must be deconstructed and a new language “spirited and free” rebuilt if we want to “find the path towards a stronger democracy than one that calls for our resignation” and “it is only on this condition that we will be able to truly effect change and shape the destiny of the world and its peoples.”
Although the essay may seem disruptive with respect to his scholarly work, it should be recalled that social progress has always been at the heart of it: Jean-Paul FITOUSSI chaired the ground-breaking Commission for Economic performances and Social Progress from 2007-2009, along with Nobel Prize laureates Joseph Stiglitz and Amartya Sen, and has been, since January 2013, Co-Chair with Joseph Stiglitz and Martine Durand of the High Level Expert Group on the measurement of Economic Performances and Social Progress.
Among his many distinctions, he received, together with Joseph Stiglitz and Amartya Sen, the 2016 Medal of the Society for Progress for the book “Mismeasuring our Lives”, and the Prize of the French Economic Association for his book, Le Théorème du lampadaire. He received the International Prize Pico Della Mirandola for his life’s work in 2017.