France is a nation that is known around the world. French wines are popular choices at many dining room tables across the globe, and the nation is often the top tourist destination for international travel. However, for all the things France is revered for, there are unfortunately many stereotypes surrounding the French people that simply aren’t true. Keep reading to learn 7 of them:
1) The French didn’t put up a fight in World War II: While it is true that there were collaborators who helped the Nazi state in this conflict, and that the military was quickly routed, that had more to do with the brutal efficiency and speed at which Nazi armed forces moved into the country. There was never much chance of a fight. Having said that, French naval forces that were at sea didn’t surrender and joined the Allied fight. Also, the famed Resistance led by Charles de Gaulle kept German occupation forces busy for some time, and was instrumental in paving the way for the eventual D-day landings that helped liberate Europe.
2) French food is nasty: This one is way off the mark. Paris is widely considered to be the gastronomical capital of the planet, with fine dining and many forms of cutting-edge and premium cuisine like no other.
3) Drivers in France drive on the wrong side of the road: This one is misappropriated from neighboring Britain. Even there they don’t drive on the wrong side of the road, they just chose to do things differently.
4) The French people are rude: Manners and politeness are actually culturally ingrained into the French people. It just happens that it’s so much so that visitors from more laid back or casual nations don’t catch on.
6) French leaders make dumb choices: This attitude is sometimes prevalent in the United States, given how lopsided a windfall the Louisiana Purchase seemed to be in favor of America. However, at the time, Napolean Bonaparte was in something of a fiscal crisis and needed to lessen his territorial responsibilities while boosting his available financial resources to maintain his active military.
7) The French refuse to learn other languages: This is patently false of most any European nation. Many continental citizens are fluent in three or more languages. A French citizen living near Belgium, Germany, or Switzerland is likely to also know German. Spanish is a common second language in the Pyrenees, and English is widely known in the cities.