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TALKING FRANCE

PODCAST: Dijon mustard, French royalty and is France heading for a ‘disastrous’ referendum?

Our Talking France podcast is back with a new episode that takes a look at everything that has been happening in France this week - from weighty topics like the right to die and the French nuclear industry, via the future of Dijon mustard, France's surprising love for royalty and our favourite French TV show.

PODCAST: Dijon mustard, French royalty and is France heading for a 'disastrous' referendum?

Host Ben McPartland is joined by Local France editor Emma Pearson, reporter Genevieve Mansfield and veteran political reporter John Lichfield to take a look at the news and talking points in France this week.

We’re taking a look at why France’s nuclear industry is in trouble and why Emmanuel Macron has chosen to bring back the highly contentious subject of euthanasia and assisted suicide, even suggesting that he might hold a national referendum on the subject.

You can find Talking France on Spotify, Apple or Google podcasts, download it HERE or listen on the link below.

John Lichfield said: “I think referenda are legitimate in certain cases, but I think the issues related to assisted dying are so complex that it’s something that lends itself to demagoguery and misinformation and I can just imagine the avalanche of nonsense that will appear on the internet. I can imagine a referendum being an absolute calamity.”

And as our podcast is made up of three Brits (plus one American) we’re taking a look at the death of the British Queen Elizabeth II, and why her passing has been such a major event in the staunchly republican nation of France.

John told us: “I think for older French people the Queen is associated with Britain being a strong ally in wartime, but also the fact that the British royal family was extraordinarily welcoming and supportive to Charles de Gaulle when he was in exile in the UK. The Queen herself was known to be a francophile and a francophone – she spoke quite good French.

“So I think there are a number of specific reasons why the French have an affection for the Queen herself, but I think it also reflects the affection for Britain in France, which we often forget.”

And we’re also taking a virtual tour around France, visiting the mustard capital of Dijon, the vineyards of Bordeaux and flagging some of our recommendations of the great places to visit during this weekend’s ‘heritage days’.

As ever, we finish with a section on the French words and phrases that have been in the news this week, plus Emma tries to persuade you all to watch her favourite French TV show, the new series of which starts this week.

Find all previous episodes of Talking France HERE, or on Apple, Spotify or Google podcasts.

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TALKING FRANCE

PODCAST: Why France faces a ‘cold turkey’ winter and how French high streets stay independent?

From spiralling prices to Paris scooters, via independent shops, France's best-known philosopher and a few French life hacks, here's the new episode of the Talking France podcast.

PODCAST: Why France faces a 'cold turkey' winter and how French high streets stay independent?

Host Ben McPartland is joined by Local France editor Emma Pearson, journalist Genevieve Mansfield, political columnist John Lichfield and French language expert and founder of French Today Camille Chevalier-Karfis to discuss everything that has been happening in France this week. 

You can find the Talking France podcast on Spotify, Apple or Google podcasts, you can download it HERE or listen on the link below.

We start with looking at why France’s low inflation figures paint a perhaps misleading picture, and why the government should be worried about January, with John warning of a ‘tsunami’ of price rises to come.

We’re also looking at why France traditionally does badly compared to its European neighbours when it comes to learning English, with Camille suggesting that it may be down to a particularly French characteristic – fear of being ridiculed. 

And we also like to answer the big questions – such as how France manages to maintain so many independent shops and who is Bernard-Henri Lévy and why does his shirt always seem to be unbuttoned?

We’re also taking a look at why e-scooters could be banned in Paris, and finish up with Ben, Emma and Gen sharing some of the life hacks that they have picked up to make time in France easier, cheaper and more fun. 

You can find this episode of Talking France, on Spotify, Apple or Google podcasts, or find all four series HERE.

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