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Le Pouvoir Discret or Le Soft Power? How French Is Fighting Back Against Globish

It should have been a celebration of French language and literature; instead it kindled a controversy. Last month’s national book fair, Livre Paris, was rocked by the organizers’ decision to highlight la littérature “Young Adult” (rather than jeune adulte) through a series of equally ill-named events. Say hello to la Bookroom, le Photobooth, le Bookquizz, and even un Brainsto (presumably...

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Abd Al Malik: “In France, We Are Living in a Two-Tier Society”

May Allah Bless France! is an autobiographical film by Abd Al Malik, a French rapper of Congolese origin, and will be screened on April 12 at NYU as part of the Black Experience in French Cinema festival. In 2015, we met with the artist and spokesperson for underprivileged populations. France-Amérique: May Allah Bless France! is the adaptation of your autobiographical...

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Christo Has Paris in (W)raptures

At the age of 83, Christo is about to make a life-long dream come true. As far back as 1962, the Bulgarian-American artist and his wife, Jeanne-Claude, already wanted to use a huge canvas to cover the Arc de Triomphe, a leading symbol of France. Entitled Projet pour Paris, Place de l’Etoile-Charles de Gaulle, this work will be on show from...

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Sauvage in U.S. Theaters

The latest movie by Camille Vidal-Naquet, in U.S. theaters on April 10,  follows a young man who sells his body on the streets of Paris for a bit of cash. Léo (Félix Maritaud), 22, works as a prostitute to earn a little money in the Bois de Boulogne park in Paris or outside an airport. The romantic but "wild" young man...

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High Life: A Space Odyssey with Juliette Binoche and Robert Pattinson

For her first English-language movie, in U.S. theaters on Friday, French director Claire Denis has made a successful foray into the science-fiction genre. The result is a space odyssey carried by Juliette Binoche and Robert Pattinson. We last heard from Claire Denis with Let the Sunshine In, a romantic comedy that arrived in U.S. cinemas last spring. This year, we...

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Toulouse-Lautrec, Chronicler of the Belle Epoque

A major exhibition at the Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts will explore Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s depiction of the stars and entertainments of 19th-century Montmartre, the bohemian center of Parisian nightlife. The exhibition examines how Toulouse-Lautrec pushed his art in new directions to portray the celebrities of his time — cabaret stars Yvette Guilbert and Aristide Bruant, dancers Jane Avril and...

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Agnès Varda, a French Filmmaker in California

Agnès Varda, the leading light of the French New Wave who passed away on March 29 at the age of 90, was as much at home in Paris as in California, where she directed six films between 1967 and 1981 and where she received an Honorary Oscar in November 2017. We met up with the French artist in 2013 when she was...

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Laurent Gaudé: Observing the Wounds of History

French novelist and playwright Laurent Gaudé was born in 1972 and has written several plays, novels, short stories, and opera libretti. He was awarded the Prix Goncourt des Lycéens in 2002 for Death of an Ancient King, an epic novel about a fictional African monarch, followed by the Prix Goncourt in 2004 for his novel The Scortas’ Sun, which paints...

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Franco-Responsibility, Louisiana Rises to the Challenge

What if "Franco-responsibility" was the key to guaranteeing the future of the French language in Louisiana? This new term was coined in Quebec to describe a simple goal — increasing the use of French in daily life. On Wednesday evenings in Lafayette, Louisiana, almost every customer in the Blue Moon Saloon speaks French. Everyone meets at 7 pm for the...

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#VersionFrançaise, A News Show for French-Style Chic

Broadcast twice a week on TV5MONDE, #VersionFrançaise is a television show focused on all things chic, design, fashion, and food à la française. Each episode lasts 26 minutes and offers a showcase for the latest talents and trends from the French capital. Interview with Katherina Marx, the producer and host of the show. You designed #VersionFrançaise to be a "news show...

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“Cajun Music Has its Place in America!”

Just a few miles from Lafayette, Louisiana, six musicians are putting their all into passing down the heritage of the French language and Cajun music. Their band, the Lost Bayou Ramblers, was formed in 1990 by brothers Louis and Andre Michot, and received a 2018 Grammy Award for Best Regional Roots Music Album. Director Bruno Doria has made a "rockumentary"...

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“Isabelle Huppert Is One of the Few French Actresses To Perform in English”

Florian Zeller, 39, is the French writer with the most works adapted for the stage in the United States. The Mother is the first instalment of a familial trilogy and is currently playing at the Linda Gross Theater in Manhattan, starring Isabelle Huppert. Written in 2010, the play portrays the life of a woman gripped by loneliness after her children...

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Experience the Best of Burgundy with Grand Victoria Cruises

[Partner Article] A barge, a region famous for its wines, and one passion: to travel. Since 2015, Edward Anderson and Cindy Unvericht have been offering unique high-end cruises down the Saône and Burgundy canals. An itinerary crafted for those who love French culture takes guests from the hospices of Beaune to the historic Dijon market. "Americans only know Paris, the...

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A French Geographer in Search of Lafayette in the United States

A young French history and geography buff is undertaking a project to map and signpost the 5,000 miles of the Marquis de Lafayette’s 1824-1825 tour across America. His work has already received the support of Emmanuel Macron and the White House, and his initiative is being put before the New Hampshire Senate this Thursday. Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette,...

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The Mustang in U.S. Theaters

Co-produced by Robert Redford and screened at the Sundance festival, The Mustang, in U.S. theaters on Friday, is the first film by young French filmmaker Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre. It tells the story of a convict in an isolated Nevada prison tasked with taming a wild horse. Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre’s favorite movie is Wim Wenders’ Paris, Texas, which she sees as a...

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Lucky Luke, a Cowboy in Paris

Lucky Luke is the main character in a Francophone comic-book series, but is all but unknown in the United States where the market is dominated by superheroes from the Marvel franchise. For the first time ever, in Lucky Luke, a Cowboy in Paris published in French and English, the sheriff has left the American West to visit France during the Belle...

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Investing in French in Vermont and New Hampshire

Vermont and New Hampshire are developing the use of French to attract tourists from Quebec just over the American border. A strategy for economic and linguistic development that is starting to pay dividends. In Burlington, the biggest city in Vermont, even the parking meters are bilingual. At the airport and the marina, in public parks and the rooms of the...

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Louise Bourgeois: L for Labyrinth, B for Beauty

French-American artist Louise Bourgeois is the woman behind more than 3,000 works of art including sketches, prints, jewelry, sculptures in wood, fabric, plaster, and rubber, as well as her monumental spiders. A coffee-table book designed in the style of a glossary has been published by Rizzoli to commemorate the career of the woman known as the “lioness of contemporary art.”...

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Mardi Gras in Louisiana: Carnivals Between the City and the Country

From the first days of January and Mardi Gras, held on March 5 this year, Louisiana celebrates a French tradition that dates back to the Middle Ages — the carnival. The line-up includes floats and bead necklaces in New Orleans, and masked horse riders and Cajun songs in the countryside. This is the world’s biggest show enjoyed for free every...

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Greta, a Psychological Thriller Starring Isabelle Huppert

Isabelle Huppert and Chloë Grace Moretz star in the new film by Neil Jordan, released in U.S. theaters this Friday. The film tells the story of an encounter that spirals out of control. Two years after Paul Verhoeven’s Elle, which was nominated for two Oscars, Isabelle Huppert is back in Greta, the new film from Neil Jordan (Interview with a Vampire, Byzantium,...

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Concorde, a Transatlantic Cruise at 1,350 mph

On March 2, 1969, the Concorde took off from Toulouse airport for its first flight. Fifty years later, the supersonic plane has been honored in a coffee table book by American designer Lawrence Azerrad. The work features 200 pieces from the author’s collection of postcards, brochures, matchbooks, and other Concorde products. The Concorde plane could cross the Atlantic in three and...