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France in focus
11 minutes | Jul 22, 2022
France, the place to be? For many holiday-goers, the summer will be French
It's summer and French vacationers are back on the road, on the rails, and in the air. After two years of suffering through the Covid-19 pandemic, it is time to recharge, rest and take in the sun.
12 minutes | Jul 15, 2022
Having an abortion in France, not always an easy road
When the US Supreme Court overturned the federal right to abortion, it sent shockwaves across the world. In France, when Simone Veil stood before parliament in 1974 and pushed for the decriminalisation of abortion, the debate was heated. Since the passing of the 1975 ‘Veil Law’ in her name, access to abortion has become for a majority of the French akin to a fundamental right. But it remains vulnerable to shifting political tides — hence the push to add it to the country’s constitution.
11 minutes | Jul 8, 2022
France's most beautiful villages: marketing the country's heritage
A testament to its history, France is sprinkled with beautiful villages and towns. To stand out, attract tourists or even new residents, many have turned to a variety of certificates, labels and competitions to boost their visibility. We've followed an inspector for the non-profit ‘Most Beautiful Villages of France’ who looked at the town of Bergheim to see if it’s worthy of obtaining this certification. We also met Christophe Alaux, a marketing professor, to understand the role of these labels.
15 minutes | Jun 24, 2022
November 2015 Paris attacks: Landmark trial draws to a close
They were the deadliest attacks on French soil since World War II. On the night of November 13, 2015, jihadists targeted Paris's Bataclan concert hall, several outdoor bars and restaurants, as well as the Stade de France stadium. To bring closure, catharsis and above all justice for the victims, a trial of those involved has been under way since September 2021, with a verdict expected on June 29. In this edition of France in Focus, we hear from a victim's partner, a lawyer and a court reporter.
13 minutes | Jun 17, 2022
Has the 'Big Quit' reached France? Employers struggle to hire staff
Flexible hours, a four-day working week and a sense of purpose are just some of the things that employees are looking for in a job. And if they feel like they're not appreciated, they might just jump ship. A recent survey found that one in four people in France are looking to quit their jobs in the next two years, as they seek better pay and better benefits. We take a closer look.
12 minutes | Jun 3, 2022
France hit by drought: Farmers bear the brunt
In this edition, we're looking at one of the key consequences of climate change: drought. From parched fields, to burning forests, to houses cracking as the ground beneath them dries up, droughts are becoming more frequent in France and around the world. As scientists look for solutions, many are calling for changes to our agricultural model and the way we consume, in the hope of conserving Earth's most precious resource: water.
12 minutes | May 27, 2022
France's maths problem: Students lag behind other EU countries
Sums, geometry, algorithms... many pupils groan at the very mention of mathematics. France's most recent education minister, Jean-Michel Blanquer, removed the often-unloved discipline from the common core teachings of French high schools in 2019. But with educators and economists ringing alarm bells about the importance of maths across multiple sectors, mathematics is expected to soon return to the classroom for all French high school students. We take a closer look.
13 minutes | May 20, 2022
Being LGBTI+ in France: The fight for equality continues
In France, coming out of the closet and living openly as a member of the LGBTI+ community can be a significant psychological, emotional and social challenge. Until just 40 years ago, it was also a legal one. In 1982, the age of consent was lowered from 21 to 18 for homosexuals in France, making it the same for everyone. This landmark law paved the way for important civil liberties, including the legalisation of same-sex marriage in 2013. But there are still obstacles to be overcome. To find out more about the ongoing fight for equality, we speak to Sébastien Tüller, LGBTI+ legal advisor for Amnesty International France.
12 minutes | May 6, 2022
Revealing the social effects of two years of mask-wearing
The surgical mask has become a potent symbol of the pandemic…and an intimate part of our daily lives. In this episode, we’re exploring how covering our faces for almost two years now has affected us. For example, does catching a glimpse of just the eyes change our perception of a person? How have we learned to interpret non-verbal clues and the emotions expressed behind that mask? And what happens when we finally take them off?
13 minutes | Apr 26, 2022
Macron's challenges ahead: Re-elected president vows to unite a divided France
After an unusual campaign, Emmanuel Macron has won re-election as French president, defeating the far right's Marine Le Pen in the run-off. However, a record number of voters cast ballots for the far right and the far left during the two rounds of the election. The abstention rate in the run-off was the highest since 1969 and the country remains polarised. Macron faces a tough challenge to unite the country.
12 minutes | Apr 15, 2022
Death of jailed Corsican nationalist revives tensions on French island
Located in the French Mediterranean, Corsica is often referred to as the "island of beauty". But it's also been the scene of recent tensions. Since last month's death of jailed assassin and independence figurehead Yvan Colonna, following an attack on him by a fellow inmate, a pro-autonomy movement has been gaining ground on Corsica. Thousands have taken to the streets to call for more autonomy, with young people particularly vocal. We take you from the seafront in Ajaccio to the university town of Corte to unpick the recent crisis and the calls for change.
12 minutes | Feb 5, 2022
A war without a name: France's controversial colonial past in Algeria
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the end of a brutal conflict that France only officially recognised as being a war in 1999. Between 1954 and 1962, swords were locked between France and Algeria, with nationalists in the North African country determined to push the colonisers out. In March 1962, along the shores of Lake Geneva, a peace deal was finally reached between ministers and a delegation from Algeria's provisional government. The Evian Accords would eventually result in Algeria's independence, ending 132 years of French rule.
12 minutes | Jan 28, 2022
France's price hikes: Households bearing the brunt of inflation
For years, inflation rates have largely stayed below targets in developed nations despite economic growth, but the pandemic has changed the equation. In France, the annual consumer inflation index is now at 3.4 percent, a 13-year high driven largely by skyrocketing energy costs. Fuel prices at French pumps are currently at all-time highs. With energy prices wreaking havoc on budgets, many French households are changing their habits. We take a closer look.
11 minutes | Jan 21, 2022
Losing faith in democracy: France's abstention problem
This week, we're exploring a key question ahead of the upcoming presidential elections in France: "to vote or not to vote?" As the list of candidates gets longer, the race is on to drum up support. But voter apathy is still a major concern and increasing numbers of would-be voters are turning their backs on politicians and the political system. Our reporters went to one Paris suburb with a particularly high abstention rate to meet some who are adamant they're going nowhere near a polling station this spring.
13 minutes | Jan 14, 2022
Four centuries after Molière's birth: The legacy of France's most successful playwright
He's known as the father of French theatre, but the influence of Molière goes well beyond France. His impact is still felt today all over the world. To mark the 400th anniversary of the famed playwright's birth, we speak to Georges Forestier, professor at the Sorbonne and a specialist in the works of Molière. We also take you on a tour of Molière's Paris.
12 minutes | Jan 7, 2022
How lobbies weigh on alcoholism prevention efforts in France
In France, it's estimated that more than 30 percent of people drink excessively. That means more than two glasses of wine per day and more than five days a week. These figures have gone up during the Covid-19 pandemic. Yet the government's approach to alcohol has been not as forceful as with other types of addiction such as smoking. Indeed, some specialists say that's down to the power of lobbies within the industry. We take a closer look in this edition of France in Focus.
11 minutes | Dec 17, 2021
Would you like some foie gras? A controversial French delicacy
In this edition, we’re focusing on the French delicacy of foie gras. One of France’s most cherished foods, it’s a staple at Christmas tables across the country. But foie gras is also a source of controversy. There are ethical concerns about how it is produced, which has led several French cities to ban it for official gatherings. The move has launched a fierce national debate.
12 minutes | Dec 10, 2021
Escaping the pandemic: France's luxury sector is booming
France is home to some of the biggest luxury brands in the world. While many everyday businesses have struggled to bounce back from the health crisis, it’s been just the opposite for the most exclusive French labels. Jean-Noël Kapferer, professor emeritus of marketing, talks us through the success of luxury brands bouncing back from the pandemic. We also see how the luxury sector is making its way into the second-hand market, bringing in a whole new clientele.
13 minutes | Dec 3, 2021
New Caledonia torn over issue of independence from France
In this edition, we take you to the South Pacific and the French territory of New Caledonia, which is gearing up for a high-stakes vote on independence on December 12. While other overseas territories are fully integrated into France, New Caledonia stands apart because it is still considered a colony. The reasons for that are rooted in its history – we take a closer look. To fully understand what's at stake, we speak to anthropologist and historian Benoît Trépied.
11 minutes | Nov 26, 2021
Entering France's Pantheon: A highly political decision
This week, we take you behind the scenes of one of Paris's most beautiful landmarks: the Panthéon. A symbol of France’s values and collective memory, the mausoleum houses the remains of some of the country's most esteemed men and women. On November 30, the Franco-American performer Josephine Baker will be honoured there. But this selection requires more than just excellence. The choice is at the discretion of the president, and the reasons behind it are very political. FRANCE 24 explains.
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