Understand France and the French

Books, Books on France, Culture, Museums and Monuments, Travel, Understand France and the French

Mona Lisa in Camelot

Two ladies in Camelot..... Who knew... Just read in the Vanity Fair article of how the 1963 American exhibition of the Mona Lisa in New York City and Washington, D.C., was America's first blockbuster art show. The writer Davids recounts in numbing detail the negotiations, preparations, flummoxes and successes of the exhibit. The exhibition was masterminded by the diplomatically savvy…read more
Architecture and Design, In the News, Understand France and the French

Reimagining Paris

Pei Pyramid, the La Defense Arche, the Ministere de la Finance, the Opéra de la Bastille, and the Bibliothèque Nationale, Sarkozy is looking even bigger, imagining an entirely new Paris.    One of the first things Sarkozy did after he moved into the Elysée Palace was to convene a meeting of prominent architects and ask them to come up with a new blueprint for Paris...... A formidable list of architects — including Richard Rogers, Jean Nouvel, Djamel Klouche and Roland Castro — put forward proposals that address a range of urban problems: from housing the poor to fixing outdated transportation systems to renewing the immigrant suburbs.

...Many of the ideas, thankfully, take "green" to a new level, trading vertical space for more parks and "green belts" to provide the city with more air, produce, and outdoor space.

Culture, In the News, Understand France and the French

French spend most time in bed France is world’s most sleepy country – Odd News | newslite.tv

A study into the leisure habits of people from 30 countries found that the French spent by far the longest amount of time sleeping. ... American's were found to be almost as fond of their beds - with 8.5 hours - said researchers from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. It seems to me the researchers have jumped from 'time spent in bed' to 'time spent sleeping' a bit too quickly ... remember this is the French we are talking about.

Apartment neighborhood, Budget and cheap, Tours and visites, Travel, Travel with Kids, Un peu différent, Understand France and the French

ParisGreeter takes you on free tours of Paris with local guides

A Paris Greeter will make sure you discover the true Paris, the way Parisians live it and love it! ... All our volunteers are Paris lovers who like to share the art, tradition and culture of this fascinating city. At the end of the walk, we really want you to have the feeling that you have not only discovered the city but also had an insight into what we call the “Parisian way of life.”

Culture, Understand France and the French

Community website just for Francophiles

And when she was frustrated with that query and other "Frenchy" searches, she decided to create a site where Francophiles can get their French on wherever they are in the world. ... Our goal is to bring together people who have a passion for the French language and francophone cultures in the interest of promoting understanding and friendship. ... Francophilia's features include a personal blog, instant messaging with other online members, live discussion room for members, forum discussions, the ability to create and join special-interest groups, to publish and RSVP to events, to publish classified ads, to upload photos, videos and music, and more.   The site is in BETA now with more to come.

Blogroll, Books on France, Culture, General, Understand France and the French

My favorite Paris blogs

If you are following France and Paris, here are a few places I like to watch to get a feeling for the culture and social movements: Ô-Chateau, a Paris wine-tasting company (with champagne cruises on the Seine!) ... We've always loved following Kristin Espinasses continuing travails as she inserts herself deeper and deeper into provincial French life in her French-word-a-day blog . Using examples from her life with her husband and two kids, she tells funny and often poignant stories of her life in France, including things she loves, hates and is just plain confused by.

Understand France and the French

Op-Ed Columnist – Roger Cohen – France on Amphetamines – Op-Ed – NYTimes.com

A few decades back, when we were young, Joni Mitchell sang of “sitting in a park in Paris, France” but dreaming of California because “I wouldn’t want to stay here; it’s too old and cold and settled in its ways here.” ... All our friends saw Reagan era-like restructurings and firings as an immediate effect of a Sarkozy win, but even most leftists felt that a dose of tough love was necessary to bring the young and the unionists to their senses. ... , Sarkozy has circumvented the 35-hour week by slashing taxes on overtime, freed up universities, downsized the state functionary community (and mentality), spurred small businesses, cut public spending and set in motion a radical reform aimed at creating a 21st-century army.