ancient, cool, Zidane, Thiery Henry

artistic, beautiful, Paris, cultured

arts, fashion, history

champagne, Europe, Paris, history

Cheese, Escargot, Youth, Color

croissants, chartreuse, culture

cultural, quaint, traditional

Delicious, beautiful, Paris, art

Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower, Cheese, Proper

Europe, French, elegant

Europe, Love, Paris, Les Bleus

Europe, Paris, French

exotic, cultural, exciting

extravagant, Paris, love

fascinating, mature, fashionable

food, Paris, fashion

fruity, tourism, fun

gastronomic, boulevards, individualistic

luxuries, Paris, cafe, relaxing

nuclear, Europe, food

old, feminine, cheese

Paris, cultural, beautiful

Paris, Eiffel tower, art, crepes

Paris, French language, Eiffel tower, wine

Romance, beautiful buildings, great food

universal healthcare

baguette, laïque, camembert

Béret, Paris, fromage, vin

beau, diversité, liberté

champagne, Paris, maison, famille

cuisine, histoire, verdure

Culture, oenologie, cuisine

gastronomie, arrogance, protection sociale

gastronomie, liberté, idée

Histoire, Paris, nourriture

Liberté, égalité, Paris

liberté, cuisine

Paris, europe, coq

patrie, vieille Europe, culture

petit, histoire, fierté

raffinement culinaire, mode, sécurité sociale, impôts

raffinement, immigration, droit

raffinement, protection, tranquillité

Révolution, Champagne, Paris

révolution, droit de l'homme, culture,

Tour Eiffel, grève, cuisine, daft punk


Compared to the discussion topic "United States", I was very interested to see that in addition to the French being very positive in describing their country, the American students were also generally very positive when discussing France.  It seems as though the Ameicans have a very positive image of France.  The American and French students also agreed on the most popular word associated with France: Paris.  Both sets of students also associated the country with their food products, including cheese, wine, cuisine, croissants, crepes, and escargot.

On peut en conclure que les français ont une vision de leur pays assez proche de celle que peut avoir le reste du monde sur la France.

Au contraire, les américains ont une image de leur pays assez éloignée de l'image qu'ils transmettent au reste du monde

I've lived in France when I was young and I'm not American so I'm also a foreigner in the US. I feel many americans have a certain view about France that is in a way more beautified.

For the French people, it would be quite natural to describe its country on the good side but for the Americans, they wouldn't necessarily answer this positively for some other countries like say Spain (no offence really).

But people in general, not just americans, also think of France as a very cultural and a beautiful place (which to a certain extent is true) but to not easily see or think about negative aspects.

To me, France is remembered as a beautiful place mostly because it was when I was young and it reminds me of my youth. But I also do remember things like stores closing really early and dogs..... everywhere.... haha

The important thing is that it is really interesting how people generally beautify France.

I realised the French didn't really use the word home when describing France ( The americans used the word about 7 times in their description of the United States). Is there any particular reason why this is so? Is it that the French don't view France as their "home".

I noticed that many of the French responses for this word were something we might consider to be stereotypes, in the same way that the French responses were for the US (hamburger, McDonalds, etc...).  On the other hand, the US responses about our own country seemed a little more personal, as well as talking about our flaws (arrogance, greed). In France, is there a similar sense of patriotism or a recognition of problems the French might have with their own country?

I was surprised by how similar the views of France were between the American students and the French students.  We both listed all sorts of famous food - cheese, wine, Champagne - as well as the icons of Paris and the Eiffel Tower.  It seems that the people in France are very tuned into the fact that tourism is the largest industry there and they know what associations are made with their country.  I also liked that the students were so positive about their country, whereas American students may not be as positive when asked to describe America.

I expected to see references to "stereotypical" French things like Berets and wine and cheese on the American side, but not the French side. I suppose I expected the French responses to be similar to ours about the United States. As it turns out, the image France portrays to the rest of the world is the same image the French have of themselves, as Christopher said. That is very interesting since our image of America is so different from what people in other countries think of us. 

I want to visit France partially because of the beautified image I have of it. Do any of you (French students) want to visit the United States, even though your image of us is not quite as ideal? 

I believe the reason why the French have a smiliar view of their country as the rest of the world is because they are a touristic nation.  They are trying to "sell" the rest of the world on the things they have to offer.  I think this is a result of positive advertising.

On the other hand, although the some parts of the US are also very touristic, the way the US is seen in the eyes of the world is at the mercy of local media.  For example, in the local news here in the US, there is rarely anything in the news about France, so my image of France remains with the touristic things that I have been conditioned to believe.  However, from visiting different countries, I feel like the political developments in the US are covered in a lot more news outlets, so the US gets a lot more scrutiny from other countries' media.  Therefore, depending on what people are shown in the news or the way news is reported, their image of the country can be different.

Je ne suis pas d'accord avec Baris, l'idée que nous avons de notre pays n'a rien à voire avec une quelconque volonté de le promouvoir pour faire du tourisme. C'est juste que pour avoir un peu voyagé on se rend compte de nos particularités. Prenons un exemple bateau: le fromage. Et bien quand on va dans un autre pays on se rend compte que nous sommes les seuls à aimer les fromages un peu particuliers, à pâtes molles,.. C'est vraiment une particularité française. Une fierté même;). Et c'est la même chose pour tout ce qui peut concerné la nourriture, la boisson,... Ensuite si Paris apparaît tant de fois, c'est surement parce que plus de la moitié de notre groupe vient de Paris ou sa région, du moins c'est mon avis.

Et ne t'inquiètes pas Lauren nous aimerions tous visiter les Etats Unis, même si nous avons quelques idées reçus cela n'empêche pas votre pays d'être attractif.


I agree that you personally are not trying to promote tourism.  What I meant is that tourism, in general in France, is more widespread throughout the country than it is here in the US.  Therefore, we see more of the iconic images of the each region in the media than maybe you see of America in France.  For example, here in America, Wisconsin is very well known for their cheeses, but no one goes there and it is not advertised, therefore I doubt most people in France would have ever heard of that, let alone want to visit there.  However, the areas that France specializes in are much more well-known (cheese, wines, etc.) because they have been around for a long time (the history of the country and these products), the country is smaller (easier to visit more regions of the country where these products exist), and much of what the country has to offer permeates our country through media such as advertising or movies (the iconic images of France that come to most peoples mind are either Paris (the Eiffer Tower), vineyards, cheese, and romance).