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French Philosophy

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Just posting to give you guys a hint that has helped me improve my grasp of the language by leaps and bounds-- Read Philosophy! Seriously it keeps you on your toes like nothing else that I've encountered, especially with complex arguments made by the likes of Sartre, Derrida, and Foucalt.

I would recommend Voltaire as a good starting point as there are plenty of readily available translations and guides to help the student of French work your way through. I saw that a few people have mentioned Candide, but his "Dictionnaire philosophique" is also an incredibly interesting work.

Plus, the fact that it is structured like an encyclopedia makes it somewhat easier to manage. Rather than facing down the terrifying prospect of tackling a whole book written in a foreign language, you can break up your reading into smaller chunks.

It does get easier! Bon chance mes amis!

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Philosophy may not be everyone's cup of tea though. I'm often struggling trying to talk to people about things like meaning of life or death. Obviously it's too much for people who are already stressed, tired after their work and have to juggle various family issues.

But for the brave of heart, philosophy is certainly a great choice. I just feel that not many of us are brave enough to tackle it, as the very idea of reading Derrida does seem quite overwhelming...

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