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French: France's Tool for Global Power Projection

MIN READMar 29, 2018 | 11:21 GMT

French President Emmanuel Macron is proposing to promote French around the world.

French President Emmanuel Macron is proposing to promote French around the world.

(LUDOVIC MARIN/AFP/Getty Images)

For native English speakers, it can be difficult to comprehend the world from the vantage point of the speaker of another language. The primary tongue of business, science, technology, aviation, and entertainment, English is a truly dynamic and global force, with over 1.5 billion speakers and untold numbers more learning it. Succinctly put: There exists a powerful and highly decentralized English-speaking world, and no Anglophone city – whether London, New York, Toronto or Sydney – is capable of claiming to be the capital of the Anglosphere. For French, the story is rather different. Without question, the capital of the French-speaking world, often called the francophonie, is Paris. The City of Light is the undisputed economic, military, publishing and entertainment hub for the language. Other Francophone countries including Belgium, Switzerland and Luxembourg may be wealthy, and some including the Democratic Republic of Congo may be more populous, but France remains the peerless...

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