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Regards sur la culture: Perceptions et réalités
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Both the beret and the baguette are emblematic of a traditional France that has undergone many changes lately. Historically, the French did their food shopping in small neighborhood stores and enjoyed a long leisurely midday meal with their families. In recent years, the French lifestyle has become more fast-paced. In addition, the French often have long commutes to their jobs, making it difficult to shop on a daily basis. They are more likely to do their shopping in large supermarchés such as Carrefour and Monoprix, and rarely have the time to cook a large midday meal.

Despite these changes in lifestyle and shopping habits, the French still tend to make a daily stop at the boulangerie to pick up a loaf of bread. Although packaged bread exists in France, the French are largely resistant to it. Each May, the entire country participates in the Fête du pain, a weeklong celebration of bread that includes demonstrations of breadmaking, visits to mills, and even sports events. In 1993, the French government established rules governing the making of any bread calling itself “de tradition française”… it may contain no preservatives and may not be frozen.



In your opinion what items would symbolize an American identity? Why have you chosen these items?

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