Vive la France! Vive la Liberte!

Today is Quatorze Juillet – July 14th– French National Day. I don’t know if it is just a coincidence that  we are reading a book about Americans discovering  France and Paris. (The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris by McCullough)

I am enjoying the book a lot, although the writing style is more historical than “artful”. I have been to France several times, including Paris. And although I have not discovered France from the perspective of an American, it was still just as “big” of an experience.

McCoullough mentions Alexis de Toqueville’s account of America quite frequently and I think it may be fun to choose this as our next read for the book club. Turning the tables, sort of speak.

Also, a few things that may be worth discussing, that occurred to me while reading the forst 5o pages of our book:

– does all the novelty about France (as described in the book) come from Americans’ limited experience to other cultures  or is it truly a culture that supersedes time and knowledge?

– how Americans felt that they were treated kindly and preferentially back then, in comparison to today’s opinions ;

–  France  was an empire and a super power for many centuries. Is France still a major player at the world table today?

– what comes first into mind when you hear the words ” France” or  “French”?

I am sure that we will have a great discussion and I am looking forward to enjoying some French ambiance and some fois gras ( if they serve it).


Vive la France, Vive la Liberte!

This entry was posted in Member's Bulletin Board. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Vive la France! Vive la Liberte!

  1. elainegallant says:

    Wow! Good things to think about. What do we think when we say/hear French or France? What is the first thing that comes to mind?
    And is this book solely an American point of view? How exclusive is it? Hmmmm…

  2. mihaela says:

    Several words that would instantly come to mind to describe France/French:
    cuisine/chef/Cordon Bleu
    That being said: I am starting to think one needs to be really motivated to finish this book by David McCollough.

    Mihaela Stoops

Leave a Reply