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Saturday, 10 January 2015

Talking to my Arab expert friend--Define what it means to be French

Today, I had a chance to speak with a friend of mine who is an expert in Arabic culture, language, and Muslim culture and language. He has taught these subjects at the university level. I shall not share his name.

He said the French need to get together and pray and they need to find out what is really means to be French.

They have forgotten, said this man, that to be French, the identity of being French is not the same as nationalism.

Patriotism is not nationalism.

What does it mean to be French? What separates a French man or woman from other peoples?

Even Sartre and Camus, or Foucault, had a line of departure, which was Catholic, liberal arts education.

This is missing.

"Prayer and study is what they need," he stated.

"The French cannot believe the secular myth that all peoples are the same and that all religions are the same. They need to reassess what it means to be French. What would Charles Martel have done, or Louis XIV?"