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Thinking Allowed: White working class boys and French thought

Updated Thursday, 18th June 2015

This episode of Thinking Allowed looks at British boys' underachievement in education and French intellectuals. 

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Thinking Allowed, hosted by Laurie Taylor, is BBC Radio 4's weekly focus on the social sciences.

School boy struggling to finish test in class Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: Rimma Zaytseva | On this week's programme:

White, working class boys at school:

Laurie Taylor talks to Garth Stahl. Lecturer in the School of Education at the University of South Australia, and author of a new study about boys' underachievement in Britain. Why do so many disengage from education? They're joined by Heather Mendick, Reader in Education at Brunel University.

French thought:

Also, the grand, French intellectual tradition. Dr Sudhir Hazareesingh, political scientist and writer, explores the prominence of thinkers in the life and history of France. From Voltaire to Foucault, how have intellectuals contributed to the distinctiveness of the nation?

This edition of Thinking Allowed is first broadcast on Wednesday 24th June 2015 at 4.00pm on BBC Radio 4. For further broadcast details, and to listen again where available, please visit

View the other episode guides in this series.

Find out more about boys' education and French thinking




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