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History and Sociology

The training of elites from the 19th c. to nowaday
Construction of a setting of comparisons between France and china

The research project is under the co-supervision of

Jean-Louis DEROUET                                       HU Yiping
(Sociology, ENS de Lyon)                               (History, ECNU)             

Philippe SAVOIE                                               
(History, ENS de Lyon)

ENS Lyon team: Jean-Louis Derouet, Philippe Savoie, Romuald Normand
ECNU team: Huo Yiping, Zhou Zhen Ping, Wang Ling

The issue of the training of elites had been left aside since the 1950s, far behind the preoccupations about the democratization of studies. It became more important again in China and in France at the beginning of the 20th c., in a context of international competition. Several works have been developed. The aim of the project is to build a setting of comparisons between France and China and to gather a scientific pool of historians and sociologists so they can deeply investigate this issue during 2 years.

In a first time, the issue will be tackled around 2 questions:

- The first concerns the values and the cultural references. In the debate on the new definition of elites, China as well as France refuse to choose between maintaining a national cultural tradition and developing skills in order to become part of a globalized world.
- The second is about measures and means. How to create elite trainings in educational systems supposedly unified: what choices must be made concerning curriculum and education? What choices can be made concerning the choice of schools by the families, etc.

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