France and Britain: The Difference Within.
Scholars from Aristotle onward have proposed that the characteristics of society directly affect the nature of government. If we apply this to Britain and France, we shall see that this proposal is definitely true. The difference between the British and French cultures becomes obvious when an assessment looks at their political systems, and each of the 6 structures, and the full range of the political culture's influence on each structure is understood.
Political socialization is the learning of your political culture; it is the process of acquiring the values and beliefs of the political system. Older generations pass on values and beliefs to the younger generations, thus political socialization starts in the family. After the family, it advances to the educational system, and it is the basis of acquiring political culture. In Britain, the two most important means of socialization are family and education. The family teaches civic responsibility and class differences, although, unlike France, these are moderated by British politics. The educational system reiterates the class differences, but is not as elitist as in France. As for France, the family, and education are the most important tools of socialization. The French see the family as a haven, a refuge from the outside world. It is the family that teaches religious and class identity, but not a political party identity. However, they do learn to mistrust outside authority such as the government. The educational system helps separate classes and promotes a conflictual working class consciousness, and lets society be divided, thus contributing to the fact that France is very politically divided and conflictual. Due to these factors in political socialization, the people now began to pick up their political culture.
Political culture is the psychological dimension of politics. In order to understand politics, you must understand that it is more than structures and procedures, it is all about perception.