French Culture from Guillotines to Fashion Essay

French Culture from Guillotines to Fashion Essay

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Did you know that the guillotine was still being used when the movie Star Wars (1977) was released? Perhaps you were unaware that the French celebrate almost a dozen national holidays every year? Maybe you were uniformed that about a third to a half of basic English words are derived from French words, including but not limited to: surf, view, strive, challenge, pride, and war? As you can see from the above information, the country of France has has a long and convoluted history, during which their advanced military, culture, and holidays have developed greatly.

Imagine being forced into laying down horizontally and looking out towards the masses of people surrounding you. You attempt to look up, but the wooden restraints around your neck are holding you down. The only thing that you can see is the blue sky, and just floating on the edges of your peripheral vision, the slight glint of the incredibly shiny and heavy metal blade hanging about fourteen feet above your head. As you hear the creaking of the rope that holds your life in place, you begin to sweat. This was how death came to King Louis XVI, and many others who fell under the mighty power of the French military. These individuals were executed by one of the most powerful death machines of the day: the infamous guillotine. According to the article, “Off With Their Heads- History of the Guillotine,” it took about a seventieth of a second for the guillotine to fall from its apex to its nadir, (a distance that was an even fourteen feet on average,) while the actual beheading only took a miniscule two hundredths of a second. The rate of speed for a guillotine was approximately twenty one feet a second. Despite this apparent speediness, these executions were apparently far fr...


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...ay because it was the day that Germany surrendered and the war ended. On this day, there is a minute of silence but no military parade. Another holiday that celebrates an ending of a war is the 8th of May or Victoire 1945, which admires the end of World War II and another victory among the French. People attend parades, sing patriotic songs, hang the national flag all over the country, and sometimes remember the people that died serving France in the war. As a result, of these national days that remember wars, the French can pay a tribute to the dead.

In conclusion, the French culture is one that has diversified itself throughout the years, particularly in the areas of: military, culture and holidays. This can be shown through the great legacy and history that the French people have left behind them in the years past, and still continue to produce to this day.

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