Slide 2: INTRODUCTION France , and in particular Paris has played an important role as a center of high culture and of decorative arts since the seventeenth century France has also played an important role in cinema,fashion and cuisine. The importance of French culture has waxed and waned over the centuries, depending on its economic, political and military importance. Slide 3: LANGUAGE France counts many regional languages, some of them being very different from standard French such as Breton and Alsatian . Some regional languages are Roman, like French. English is taught in schools as a second language. Slide 4: RELIGION France is a secular country where freedom of thought and of religion is preserved, by virtue of the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen. The Republic is based on the principle of laïcité , that is of freedom of religion enforced by the Jules Ferry laws and the 1905 law on the separation of the State and the Church. Slide 5: EDUCATION The French educational system is highly centralised , organised , and ramified. It is divided into three different stages: primary education ; secondary education and higher education Primary and secondary education is predominantly public while higher education has both public and private elements . Slide 6: MINISTER OF CULTURE The Minister of Culture is, in the Government of France, the cabinet member in charge of national museums and monuments; promoting and protecting the arts in France and abroad; and managing the national archives and regional “ maisons de culture” . The Ministry of Culture is located on the Palais Royal in Paris. Slide 7: Académie française The Académie française , or the French Academy, is the pre-eminent French learned body on matters pertaining to the French language . The Académie consists of forty members, known as immortels . New members are elected by the members of the Académie itself . Académicians hold office for life, but they may be removed for misconduct. The body has the task of acting as an official authority on the language; it is charged with publishing an official dictionary of the language . Slide 8: LABOR In France the first labour laws were Waldeck Rousseau's laws passed in 1884. Between 1936 and 1938 the Popular Front enacted a law mandating 12 days each year of paid vacation for worker. Five years later, conservative prime minister Dominique de Villepin enacted the New Employment Contract (CNE) In 2006 he then attempted to pass the First Employment Contract (CPE ) through a vote by emergency procedure Slide 9: SOCIAL WELFARE The French are profoundly committed to the public healthcare system and to their "pay-as-you-go" social welfare system. In 1998, 75% of health payments in France were paid through the public healthcare system. Since 27 July 1999, France has a universal medical coverage for permanent residents in France Slide 10: FOOD Traditional French culture places a high priority on the enjoyment of food . Ingredients and dishes vary by region . There are many significant regional dishes that have become both national and regional. Many dishes that were once regional, however, have proliferated in different variations across the country in the present day. Cheese and wine are also a major part of the cuisine, playing different roles both regionally and nationally with their many variations Slide 11: SPORTS The French "national" sport is football. The most-watched sports in France are football, rugby, cycling, tennis, handball , basketball France is notable for holding the football World Cup in 1998, for holding the annual cycling race Tour de France, and the tennis Grand Slam tournament Roland Garros , or the French Open . Slide 12: ART The first paintings of France are those that are from prehistoric times, painted in the caves . The Louvre in Paris is one of the most famous and the largest art museums in the world, created by the new revolutionary regime in 1793 in the former royal palace. EXAMPLES- the Mona Lisa, by Leonardo da Vinci, and classical Greek Venus de Milo Slide 13: MUSIC France boasts a wide variety of indigenous folk music, as well as styles played by immigrants from Africa, Latin America and Asia . In the field of classical music, France has produced a number of legendary composers, like Gabriel Faure, while modern pop music has seen the rise of popular French hip hop, French rock, techno, and turntablists . The Fête de la Musique was created in France , a music festival, which has since become worldwide.