Erik Orsenna like to receive. Opening the door of his house, in the neighbourhood of the Butte-aux-Cailles, his smile cheerful puts them immediately at ease. His enthusiasm also. Orsenna is one of those rare personalities whose positivism standing is almost confusing: it rejoices without ceasing, for everything and anything. In Figaro , someone who knows him well confided to me, before the meeting: “In my lifetime, I have never seen Orsenna mouth.”

However, the interested party, which took place in his chair, located in the center of a living room-patio bathed in light, has already “made the mouth. At least once. In 1970. This year, two years after graduating from Sciences Po, he spends the aggregation of social and economic sciences. It has a lot of work, potassé, bachoté. All the signals are green. The work pays, it is well-known. However, nothing goes as planned, and the candidate Eric Arnoult (his name in the civil registry) is recalibrated. “It is the failure of the most …

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