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French Oral Exam And/or Coursework - Help!


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#1 Guest: lucky045_*

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 16:25

For my french coursework and for my oral exam I have to pick two topics relating to France, and one of them must be a current events topic. I'm thinking of doing a question on "Le Petit Prince" for the coursework, however I'm a bit stuck on the current events topic. There is only one person in the class who has an idea - incidentally she is doing Sarkozy and his new policies - which I had already asked my teacher about... anyway, we're not allowed to do the same topics as each other and anyway the mark scheme said that all past courseworks etc on Sarkozy (last year when he was up and coming) have been "too one-sided" to get good marks.

Does anyone have any ideas about anything happening in France now which might be interesting for an oral presentation?


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#2 DString

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 16:32

What about This
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#3 littlelady87

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 16:44

Why don't you do a search for French online news sites (BBC equivalent) and see what big stories they have?

http://www.ambafranc...?id_rubrique=93
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#4 Roseau

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 16:48

I would have thought "Sarkozy and his new policies" was a bit of a massive topic and would seem to cover almost all of French current affairs.

Are you allowed to focus on one of his policies? If the other person is doing a general overview then this would not be exactly the same.

It would be best to choose something which you are interested in anyway. Among the hotly debated topics of the moment are:
- the lengthening of the period people have to work before they can retire. (In my opinion probably too complex for you to do properly as it would involve getting your head round the current French retirement schemes which are numerous and complex).
- the neeed to have a minimum service in public transport on strike days
- the deficit of the "securité sociale"
- the 35 hour working week and how overtime is paid
- how much media coverage should be given to Sarkozy's divorce

Perhaps not on the front pages but nevertheless relevant
- university reform (you could talk about the differences between the French and the British university systems, past attempts at reforms and why they failed)
- immigration and illegal immigrants
- constitutional reform
- tax reform
- foreign policy and a perhaps closer relationship with the United States
- Sarkozy as a spiritual heir of De Gaulle
- attempts by the government to legislate what history should be taught in schools
- social unrest in the "banlieus"

If I think of anything else I will add another post. Feel free to PM me if you want.
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#5 Guest: lucky045_*

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 17:13

QUOTE(DString @ Oct 30 2007, 04:32 PM) View Post

What about This



QUOTE(littlelady87 @ Oct 30 2007, 04:44 PM) View Post

Why don't you do a search for French online news sites (BBC equivalent) and see what big stories they have?

http://www.ambafranc...?id_rubrique=93


Thanks, I'll have a look at those two sites.

QUOTE(kerioboe @ Oct 30 2007, 04:48 PM) View Post

I would have thought "Sarkozy and his new policies" was a bit of a massive topic and would seem to cover almost all of French current affairs.

Are you allowed to focus on one of his policies? If the other person is doing a general overview then this would not be exactly the same.

It would be best to choose something which you are interested in anyway. Among the hotly debated topics of the moment are:
- the lengthening of the period people have to work before they can retire. (In my opinion probably too complex for you to do properly as it would involve getting your head round the current French retirement schemes which are numerous and complex).
- the neeed to have a minimum service in public transport on strike days
- the deficit of the "securité sociale"
- the 35 hour working week and how overtime is paid
- how much media coverage should be given to Sarkozy's divorce

Perhaps not on the front pages but nevertheless relevant
- university reform (you could talk about the differences between the French and the British university systems, past attempts at reforms and why they failed)
- immigration and illegal immigrants
- constitutional reform
- tax reform
- foreign policy and a perhaps closer relationship with the United States
- Sarkozy as a spiritual heir of De Gaulle
- attempts by the government to legislate what history should be taught in schools
- social unrest in the "banlieus"

If I think of anything else I will add another post. Feel free to PM me if you want.


That's a good idea - I imagine the other girl will just be detailing some of Sarkozy's most controversial policies, and giving an opinion, but studying them a bit more closely sounds like a good idea. I'll be honest and say I really dont know much about france or French politics or anything like that, but this is a good opportunity for some research. The attempts to dictate what history should be taught is interesting, as well as the opportunity for a closer relationship with the United States.

That's really really helpful, thanks!
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#6 freda_bloogs

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 17:42

What about last week's transport strikes? Honestly, they were a pain in the ####!

(And you're more than welcome to quote that!)
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#7 Roseau

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 19:36

QUOTE(lucky045 @ Oct 30 2007, 06:13 PM) View Post

That's a good idea - I imagine the other girl will just be detailing some of Sarkozy's most controversial policies, and giving an opinion, but studying them a bit more closely sounds like a good idea. I'll be honest and say I really dont know much about france or French politics or anything like that, but this is a good opportunity for some research. The attempts to dictate what history should be taught is interesting, as well as the opportunity for a closer relationship with the United States.

That's really really helpful, thanks!


If you look at last week's papers (Le Monde has an online website and so does Libération) you will find things about a letter written by a young French Resistance fighter, Guy Moquet, shortly before he was executed which lycée teachers were told they had to read in class on a particular day. There was a lot of debate about this and the Education Minister was booed when he went to read the letter in one of the lycées in the town in which he is the Mayor.

I think it was last year that the Parliament actually passed a law saying that children had to be taught that French colonisation was good for the countries they colonised. This law was later withdrawn but again caused quite a furore.
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#8 snhs

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 22:53

Would you be allowed to do a comparison? A lot of the papers associate Sarkozy with a Napoleon-like figure because of stature, scale of his political reforms etc.

Does it have to be France or can it be French speaking countries? There were some stories recently suggesting Belgium was having trouble keeping the different areas together and predicting an eventual break up. There was also one Belgian who put the country up for sale on ebay, advising it be bought separately and kept that way. There's also quite an interesting democratic system in Quebec with some parties wanting to split completely, despite semi autonomy, a bit like the Nats. On the colonies issues there was an obituary recently for a mercenary who was involved in several African coup attempts

You could also look at the relationship between those in high political office in France e.g. Sarkozy and Villepin, former prime minister, hate each other (i think the latter was brought up on charges after leaving office), there's also Chirac who is in quite a legal web with losing Presidential immunity and various other things. One of the female ministers of the new government was found to have lied on a C.V. for a job, so you could use that as a basis to talk about the importance of honesty in political life.

There's also relations with America, particularly with Iraq, various papers predict they will be a bit friendlier with Sarkozy, especially after his visit. Having said that apparently the American Diplomatic Service thought they would get along better with Chirac than Thatcher...
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#9 maddielou_

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Posted 30 October 2007 - 23:01

QUOTE(lucky045 @ Oct 30 2007, 04:25 PM) View Post

For my french coursework and for my oral exam I have to pick two topics relating to France, and one of them must be a current events topic. I'm thinking of doing a question on "Le Petit Prince" for the coursework, however I'm a bit stuck on the current events topic. There is only one person in the class who has an idea - incidentally she is doing Sarkozy and his new policies - which I had already asked my teacher about... anyway, we're not allowed to do the same topics as each other and anyway the mark scheme said that all past courseworks etc on Sarkozy (last year when he was up and coming) have been "too one-sided" to get good marks.

Does anyone have any ideas about anything happening in France now which might be interesting for an oral presentation?


I think someones already asked but does it have to be on France, or just something relating to france? or french speaking countries etc?
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#10 Guest: lucky045_*

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 07:34

No it's French speaking countries, I hadn't thought of anything to do with them though... This is all actually really interesting.
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#11 DString

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 07:36

Would anyone mind if I used their ideas for some French Homework? Please?

Dstring
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#12 snhs

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 17:14

QUOTE(DString @ Oct 31 2007, 08:36 AM) View Post

Would anyone mind if I used their ideas for some French Homework? Please?

Dstring


Silence gives consent. I don't think anyone would mind, especially when they were posting to help with a form of homework anyway.
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#13 Guest: lucky045_*

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 17:22

I don't mind, obviously, since I was asking for coursework help in the first place. biggrin.gif
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