France

2:47am

Mon May 27, 2013
Europe

France Pays Tribute To Early U.S. Fighter Pilots

Originally published on Mon May 27, 2013 6:47 am

A memorial outside Paris honors members of the Lafayette Squadron, which was started by a group of young American men in 1914 who wanted to fight for France when World War I broke out. The U.S. had not yet entered the war.
Eleanor Beardsley NPR

Every Memorial Day weekend, a ceremony takes place just outside Paris to honor a group of Americans who fought in France. They're not D-Day veterans, but a little known group of pilots who fought for France in World War I, before the U.S. entered the war.

This year's ceremony in the tiny town of Marnes-la-Coquette began with a flyover by two French air force Mirage fighter jets from the Escadrille Lafayette, or Lafayette Squadron, paying tribute to the men who founded the group nearly 100 years ago.

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2:47pm

Sun May 26, 2013
The Two-Way

Tens Of Thousands Of Gay Marriage Opponents Protest In Paris

Thousands of supporters of the anti-gay marriage movement "La Manif Pour Tous" (Demonstration for all) wave flags as they gather at the Invalides square in Paris on Sunday.
Eric Feferberg AFP/Getty Images

Some 150,000 people hit the streets of Paris on Sunday to protest a law that legalizes same-sex marriage in France. The mass demonstration comes just days before the first ceremony is scheduled to take place.

The Guardian reports that police "evicted" about a dozen activists who climbed to the roof the Socialist party headquarters to unfurl a banner urging President Fran├žois Hollande to resign.

The paper adds:

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8:54am

Sat May 25, 2013
Europe

War Of Words: France Debates Teaching Courses In English

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 3:13 pm

Demonstrators in Paris protest Thursday against a measure to teach more university courses in English.
Jacques Demarthon AFP/Getty Images

Will teaching in English at France's universities undermine the French language? That's up for debate in the country now, and the argument is heated.

The lower house of parliament approved a measure Thursday that would allow courses to be taught in English, something that is currently against the law.

Those in favor of the proposal say it will attract more international students and improve English language skills of French students. But opponents say the move will only impoverish and marginalize the country's tongue.

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2:41pm

Tue May 21, 2013
Europe

Far-Right Historian Commits Suicide In Notre Dame Cathedral

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 3:43 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

There was a dramatic scene today at Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral. A far-right historian and activist shot himself to death after calling for action to - in his words - protect France's identity. He was 78-year-old Dominique Venner. And as NPR's Eleanor Beardsley reports, he was vehemently opposed to France's new law authorizing gay marriage and adoption.

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3:28pm

Mon May 20, 2013
Parallels

An Ancient Religious Pilgrimage That Now Draws The Secular

Originally published on Mon May 20, 2013 7:00 pm

A pilgrim walks the Way of St. James outside Santiago de Compostela, northwestern Spain, on July 21, 2010. The ancient religious pilgrimage is also attracting the nonreligious these days.
Miguel Riopa AFP/Getty Images

A 1,200-year old European pilgrimage route is experiencing a revival. Last year alone, some 200,000 followed in the footsteps of their medieval forebears on the Way of St. James, making their way some 750 miles from Paris across France to the Spanish coastal city of Santiago de Compostela, and the relics of the eponymous apostle.

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