Contemporary short fiction, poetry and more

The news from France is very bad

That was Winston Churchill, winner of the Nobel prize for literature, telling it like it was.  Note that he did not say, “Operations in the Dunkirk area seem likely to fall short of stakeholder expectations, and so we are downsizing that aspect of our business.”   You may amuse yourself by translating Winston Churchill speeches into management-speak, or your own office emails into Winston Churchill language.  All his major works are available as audio books, read by the excellent Christian Rodska. 

And this is me saying: The news from France is very bad. 

6.5 million French voters cast their ballots for Marine Le Pen’s FN in the first round of presidential voting. 

Every one of them should have the word “VICHY” tattoo’d on his or her forehead. 

Either French culture and language is going to survive, or it is not. 

If it is not, then let us have done with it.  I believe that it can and will and must survive. 

If it is to survive, it must walk on its own two feet, and it must rid itself of all manifestations of inferiority. 

The enemy of French culture is not North African in origin.  I have been to Tunisia on holiday with the Jays.  The most French I have ever spoken in my life was the day we went on the camel ride in Tunisia. 

The enemy of French culture is still the United States. 

I want to see contemporary French films on British television, both on BBC and Film 4.  There are certain corners of cinema that only the French are qualified to explore. 

An insular, ethnically-cleansed, re-Nazified France is too horrible to contemplate.  I want France to get through the current situation.  The 1905 law of secularism was a great thing that we in the UK have yet to learn from. 

Where is “Le Grandeur”?  Where is the confidence?  Where is the flair?  

Ou est La vraie France?


One response to “The news from France is very bad

  1. Greg White April 26, 2012 at 1:12 am

    I agree about the movies. In my early 20s there were foreign movies on TV all the time, when BBC2 and Channel 4 still had a conception of themselves as educators and pushed more challenging content. I remember sitting transfixed through a couple of Tarkovsky’s films (Russian), the Dekalog by Kieslowski (Polish), not to forget his ‘La Double Vie de Véronique’. Absolute joy. I’ve spotted a couple of François Ozon films on Film 4 recently, but we need seasons of the things, ideally, not single isolated instances. I’d like to see a syllabus of films, curated and followed up by documentaries, designed to stretch the imagination of viewers. I’m horrified by how little makes its way across La Manche.

    As for what’s going on politically over there, depressingly predictable.

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