A screenshot of the Longform App in a stylized iPhone

Our Free New App for iPhone and iPad

  • Every pick from Longform.org
  • Follow any publisher or writer
  • All articles available offline
Download on the App Store

france

15 articles
Avatar_57x57

Reflections on Villaplane

A French soccer star's rise and fall from sports to cons to the Nazi Party.

"I watched, horrified, as she let Villaplane into her home, followed by three other men. I took aim, putting my finger on the trigger of my pistol. Then I remembered the Communist Party order not to assassinate individuals, and as the door closed, I ran to find my friends. It was too late: they had been arrested by the Brigade Nord-Africaine. An Arabic soldier pointed a gun at me, telling me to give up any weapons and join the others. My comrades and I were marched to a ditch and ordered to line up with our hands on our heads. I stood on the far right as three men in SS uniform marched into view."

Avatar_57x57

Behind Claude’s Doors

Now 91, she was once the “world’s most exclusive madam.”

Avatar_57x57

Palace Intrigue

François Hollande campaigned as “Monsieur Normal,” but after taking office as France’s President, a single tweet exposed his twisted 20-year love triangle.

Avatar_57x57

Afro-Europe in the World Cup

How the children of African immigrants came to control the destiny of teams in France and Belgium and what it says about European identity.

Avatar_57x57

The French As Dostoevsky Saw Them

“Americans find it hard to believe that foreigners are unalterably foreign, for they have seen generations of immigrants who became Americans.”

Avatar_57x57

Al Qaeda Wants Africa

A war travelogue through Mali alongside French troops as a “place just like Afghanistan” descends into chaos.

Avatar_57x57

L’Étranger

France, wealth and the saga of tax exile Gérard Depardieu.

Avatar_57x57

French Women Worry About Getting Fat, Too

On Jenny Craig’s European expansion and how dieting differs in France and the States.

Avatar_57x57

The New French Hacker-Artist Underground

On the French urban exploration group UX—”sort of like an artist’s collective, but far from being avant-garde—confronting audiences by pushing the boundaries of the new—its only audience is itself.”

Avatar_57x57

What Really Happened to Strauss-Kahn?

An investigation into the events surrounding Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s May 2011 arrest for sexual assault.

Avatar_57x57

Long Day's Journey

Two weeks spent walking across Provence.

There is something about entering an ancient town on foot that's radically different from entering the same place by car. Keep in mind that these old French towns were all designed by people on foot for people on foot. So when you walk in, you're approaching the place as it was intended to be approached—slowly and naturally, the way Dorothy came upon Oz (spires rising in the distance, a sense of mounting mystery: What kind of city will this be?).

Avatar_57x57

The Life & Times Of M. Serge Gainsbourg

Gainsbourg decked out his home at 5 Rue de Verneuil in Saint Germain all in black, inspired by a time when he was younger when he'd somehow got the keys to Salvador Dali's house and made love to his first wife in every room while Dali was away. He even stole a small token souvenir in the form of a picture from Dali's porn collection. (Serge was obsessed with Dali and the pair later became friends. The title of 'Je T'Aime... Moi Non Plus' - roughly translated as 'I love you, me neither' - was inspired by something Dali was once supposed to have said: "Picasso is Spanish - so am I; Picasso is a genius - so am I; Picasso is a communist - me neither.")
Avatar_57x57

The Assassin in the Vineyard

Who would poison the vines of La Romanée-Conti, the tiny, centuries-old vineyard that produces what most agree is Burgundy’s finest, rarest, and most expensive wine?

Avatar_57x57

Fading Horrors of the Grand Guignol

The macabre, ultra-violent plays put on at the Grand Guignol defined an era in Paris, attracting foreign tourists, aristocrats, and celebrities. Goering and Patton saw plays there in the same year. But the carnage of WWII ultimately undermined the shock of Guignol’s brutality, and audiences disappeared.

Avatar_57x57

The Lizard, the Catacombs, and the Clock

The story of the most secret underground society in Paris.