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Conseillers et conseillères agricoles en France (1945 -1983) : l'amour du progrès aux temps de la "révolution silencieuse"

Abstract : The history of agricultural advisers allow to reconsider the process of modernization of French agriculture from the Liberation until the early 1980s. Studying the history of this singular professional becoming leads to a dual inquiry on the means deployed to implement the postwar modernizing project, and the professionnalization of the group of the advisers, refusing to consider them as a transmission belt of public policies. During the years 1945-1959, in order to planning the increase of agricultural productivity labour, new forms of technical framework are tried. To encourage farmers to transform their own practices, promoters of agricultural extension test unprecendented devices based on the permanent presence of a technician on the side of the farmers. These first advisers place themselves progressively under the authority of professionnal agricultural organisations, Chambers of Agriculture in particular, to assert their autonomy from the administration control on the one hand, and the firms of the other. The concept of moral economy of the farming world modernization allows to understand the political convergence beetween these advisers and the small and medium modernizing peasantry representatives. First official recognition given to agricultural advisers by decrees of 1959 open a new period, wich extends until the early 1970s, marked by the formation of a specific occupational group of advisers. This professionalization process nevertheless remains unfinished, the passage of the extension development established by the decree of October 4, 1966 initiating a tighter control on agricultural extension. Relied on training centers, technical services of Chambers of Agriculture, local agricultural technical groups, and their own unions, advisers still manage to forge an attractive professional imaginary that becomes a point of reference for all the technicians in a para-agricultural sector while growing. The business adviser is defined by a constant game of proximity and distance to farmers, assuming practical intelligence of agricultural practices, with the dual aim of continuously increasing productivity agricultural labor and social advancement of family farmers. In 1972, the crisis of the national developing device opens a third phase in the history of agricultural advisers. Judging by the instruments introduced by the rationalization program budget decisions (Rationalisation des choix budgetaires), their involvement is now criticized for its lack of effectiveness. Competition from agricultural development workers increasingly numerous, advisers tend to disappear as specific professional group on a national level, while developing new strategies at the local and county to reinvent their relationship with farmers. The organization of the States General of the agricultural development in 1982-1983 confirms the coexistence of several logics of development where the modernizing project was first established as the agricultural unit impulse towards progress. If the occupational group of advisers gradually breaks down, preventing a real transmission of collective identity, the imaginary institution of their trade continues to irrigate agricultural and rural development initiatives before the end of the studying period.
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  • HAL Id : tel-01439208, version 2

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Sylvain Brunier. Conseillers et conseillères agricoles en France (1945 -1983) : l'amour du progrès aux temps de la "révolution silencieuse". Histoire. Université de Grenoble, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012GRENH016⟩. ⟨tel-01439208v2⟩

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