The great push to C2 (Extra French Edition)

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whatiftheblog
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby whatiftheblog » Wed Mar 08, 2017 11:31 am

MamaPata wrote:Interesting! That sounds like a great idea. I'm quite into politics, but haven't been properly following the French elections to my shame. Do you have any suggestions about where to start?


Hoo boy! :D So I would typically say Le Monde, but they limit you to 15 free articles a month (I've found the online subscription to be totally worth it, I read 15+ of their articles a day). BFM is a good free/unlimited option, and their live 24/7 newscast can also be streamed for free:

Election coverage: http://www.bfmtv.com/politique/election/presidentielle/
Live broadcast: http://www.bfmtv.com/mediaplayer/live-v ... nlocgoogle

If you're into politics + France + French, this is a great election to be following - with the polls as they stand now, the result will undoubtedly transform the entire Western democratic paradigm and, I hope, lead to a profound reevaluation of party politics in the 21st century. Debates start in two weeks 8-)
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby Ogrim » Wed Mar 08, 2017 4:57 pm

whatiftheblog wrote:
MamaPata wrote:Interesting! That sounds like a great idea. I'm quite into politics, but haven't been properly following the French elections to my shame. Do you have any suggestions about where to start?


Hoo boy! :D So I would typically say Le Monde, but they limit you to 15 free articles a month (I've found the online subscription to be totally worth it, I read 15+ of their articles a day). BFM is a good free/unlimited option, and their live 24/7 newscast can also be streamed for free:

Election coverage: http://www.bfmtv.com/politique/election/presidentielle/
Live broadcast: http://www.bfmtv.com/mediaplayer/live-v ... nlocgoogle

If you're into politics + France + French, this is a great election to be following - with the polls as they stand now, the result will undoubtedly transform the entire Western democratic paradigm and, I hope, lead to a profound reevaluation of party politics in the 21st century. Debates start in two weeks 8-)


In addition to those recommendations, I would also suggest the website of Franceinfo, which is a public broadcaster. They have a 24 hours TV and radio news service and they cover the elections very well in my view.

In addition to Le Monde, which I also read every day, you may want to check out Le Figaro, whose journalism I also find of very high quality. They do not have a limit of articles per month as far as I know, but they have a "premium" version for which you pay 15 euros per month. That also gives you access to the electronic version of the daily as well as the weekend magazines. Just for info, they are more rightwing than Le Monde and openly supports Les Républicains, but whatever your own political leanings I always find it interesting to get the views from all sides of the political spectrum, and Le Figaro has some very interesting commentators. For a leftwing take on the elections and on French politics in general, you have Libération, which has been in a lot of trouble but still manages to produce serious quality journalism.

Then there are some good weekly magazines, like L'Express, l'OBS and Le Point.

@whatiftheblog: Living in France I cannot avoid the presidential elections even if I wanted to, but since I am a political anorak :ugeek: (as the British say) I very much enjoy it right now, much better than a TV show like the West Wing. :) Whatever the outcome there are certainly going to be readjustments in the political landscape in France, but whether it will be for better or worse I am not so sure. However, let's avoid overt political discussions here on the Forum - ce n'est pas permis ;) . If you feel like discussing French politics, you can always PM me.
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby tastyonions » Wed Mar 08, 2017 7:07 pm

If you want a non-professional but sometimes interesting or unorthodox take on politics in general in French, you can check out the "citizen journalist" site AgoraVox: http://www.agoravox.fr/

People of all stripes write there.
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby Finny » Thu Mar 09, 2017 3:10 am

For election coverage these days, I get most of my news incidentally from RMC, although France Info is also quite informative. TV-wise, I'd recommend LCI as well as BFM. For newspapers, Le Monde, although there are lots of choices. Really, any media source that covers current events will have election information; it's more of a question of how much of it you want to have. My primary study methods involve either reading kid/teen/adult books or listening to the radio, so I bump into election coverage whenever I'm listening to RMC because they're all talk all the time.

I used to listen to Europe 1, but dumped them because of how many times a day (like 100) they play music in English. I hear next to no English on RMC, and that's the way I like it. TV-wise, I used to use i>TELE, but that stopped during the strike, and I went to BFM, which is good, but I then found LCI, which I prefer the most for news TV. However, I then left all of them and started using French 2 and 3, since I wanted more varied language than I was getting from the news. I eventually left those when I realized I really just preferred listening to the radio instead of watching TV.
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby Woodsei » Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:35 pm

whatiftheblog wrote:6. Work through my "binder" - it's basically a large planner I put together with separate sections for grammar review and practice, CV reference materials, speaking prompts, DALF materials, and so on. There's plenty to do in there already that would exercise all four skillsets, probably at least 40 hours worth of work. I hope to have this finished by mid-February.


This is such a great idea! I don't know why it never occurred to me, since I do that pretty much for anything school or work-related, just to keep it all in one place and organize my thoughts. This would especially help here because I feel I have been spreading myself thin all over the place and my resources are scattered around. Just print, file, and thankfully look at one resource for an extended, uninterrupted session :D

And your log is so much fun :D So much. I am especially enjoying the positive tone and your progress is extremely significant and such a motivating factor. First PM, now you. So glad I'm doing French :)
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby whatiftheblog » Fri Mar 10, 2017 4:06 am

Woodsei wrote:This is such a great idea! I don't know why it never occurred to me, since I do that pretty much for anything school or work-related, just to keep it all in one place and organize my thoughts. This would especially help here because I feel I have been spreading myself thin all over the place and my resources are scattered around. Just print, file, and thankfully look at one resource for an extended, uninterrupted session :D

And your log is so much fun :D So much. I am especially enjoying the positive tone and your progress is extremely significant and such a motivating factor. First PM, now you. So glad I'm doing French :)


Hey Woodsei, thanks so much! Very glad to hear this is helpful. I really like working with the binder - for instance, I have a separate section with materials for my application, including a few fiches (still have no idea what to call these in English - pages of notes?) containing key takeaways from the school's own marketing materials and other sources. Really useful to keep it all in one place.

A couple more notes on my "methods": I recently started writing out particularly interesting / useful expressions I encounter on little post-it notes and putting them up all over my desk; I've since run out of desk space, so I've instead cleared some wall space for a board instead. Having my eyes fall on these things has been really helpful in retaining everything.

I discovered another podcast I absolutely love: it's called Transfert by Slate.fr, and it's basically people talking about weird things that happened to them. Fascinating!

On the writing front, I think I've officially gotten to the point where I can just sit down and spit out 1,000 words on a pretty serious (though well known to me) topic in about 40 minutes with 1-2 lookups max. It's actually ridiculous - today I had opinions about things I'd seen on TV, so I just sat down and wrote them out, only getting stuck once on the word "paresse" of all things. So at the end of it all I sit back, check the time, check the word count, and think to myself, "alright, yeah, that was fine, I can definitely talk about this intelligently". And then, quite literally the very next thing in my mind is "but this probably wouldn't be sufficient to pass C1 writing...", even though I rationally understand that it absolutely would. It just stunned me that I'm still subconsciously thinking in terms of my skills at the beginning of this cycle. Ugh.

Finally, on a slightly odd note: I don't know how common this is, but I've noticed that when I listen to one specific person speaking for an extended period of time, I typically walk away with some of their behaviors stuck in my speech for at least a little while. It could be intonation or their accent or the positioning of their lips or a particular word they use frequently or whatever, but it just imprints in my brain. After every movie starring Blake Lively, I pout for at least a week straight; it's really strange.

Now it's started happening again. Fortunately for my purposes, the one single person I happen to be listening to the most in French these days is, in fact, Emmanuel Macron, and so if anyone's going to imprint their French ways on to me, might as well have it be him. He has a fairly distinctive speech pattern, a certain staccato to the way he forms sentences, and as I write my essays now, I'm noticing that that staccato has carried over to how my brain naturally wants to think in French, using the same sort of constructs. It's sort of freaky but also cool all the same.
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby blaurebell » Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:01 am

whatiftheblog wrote:I don't know how common this is, but I've noticed that when I listen to one specific person speaking for an extended period of time, I typically walk away with some of their behaviors stuck in my speech for at least a little while.


This phenomenon is actually called "mirroring" in psychology if you want to read up on it and it is not limited to speech. I even catch myself with other people's gestures and facial expressions. I think this actually helps a lot with understanding among people close to each other and there have even been methods developed to exploit this phenomenon in sales strategies to simulate "closeness" :roll:

The best TL language speakers actually mirror to an extreme extent! Luca Lampariello does this *a lot*, just watch him in videos when he speaks different languages and you will see that his mannerisms are different for each one and stronger for those languages where he has lived in the country. Similarly, my husband says that although he doesn't speak French very well he can make himself understood if he moves more like a French person while speaking. I also had a Spanish teacher once who had learned scraps of Italian on the street in Rome where he was only 2 weeks - never learned it properly. He could produce a stream of "Italian" that was totally understandable to a native speaker, but 70% was just behavioural mannerisms and exploiting vocabulary overlap. He was basically just speaking Spanish "the Italian way". Fascinating! I've been thinking of doing this consciously and picking an actor whose accent and mannerisms I like and start shadowing not only the sound but also the way of moving.
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby whatiftheblog » Fri Mar 10, 2017 2:48 pm

blaurebell wrote:This phenomenon is actually called "mirroring" in psychology if you want to read up on it and it is not limited to speech. I even catch myself with other people's gestures and facial expressions. I think this actually helps a lot with understanding among people close to each other and there have even been methods developed to exploit this phenomenon in sales strategies to simulate "closeness" :roll:

The best TL language speakers actually mirror to an extreme extent! Luca Lampariello does this *a lot*, just watch him in videos when he speaks different languages and you will see that his mannerisms are different for each one and stronger for those languages where he has lived in the country. Similarly, my husband says that although he doesn't speak French very well he can make himself understood if he moves more like a French person while speaking. I also had a Spanish teacher once who had learned scraps of Italian on the street in Rome where he was only 2 weeks - never learned it properly. He could produce a stream of "Italian" that was totally understandable to a native speaker, but 70% was just behavioural mannerisms and exploiting vocabulary overlap. He was basically just speaking Spanish "the Italian way". Fascinating! I've been thinking of doing this consciously and picking an actor whose accent and mannerisms I like and start shadowing not only the sound but also the way of moving.


Wow, that's fascinating, thank you! I'll definitely read up on this (in French :D). There's quite an enjoyable Ted talk on a similar topic, actually: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdImQveEI0c
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby blaurebell » Fri Mar 10, 2017 3:34 pm

whatiftheblog wrote:There's quite an enjoyable Ted talk on a similar topic, actually: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdImQveEI0c


Thank you, didn't know this one yet! And yeah, he demonstrates those mannerisms I meant very well :lol:
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Re: The great push to C2 (French)

Postby tastyonions » Sat Mar 11, 2017 2:28 pm

Merci pour la recommandation de "Transfert." Le premier épisode m'a épaté (l'histoire racontée par le type qui épie ses voisins d'en face).
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