One of the modern world's earliest republics, France led a major empire covering almost 9 percent of the world's area — spanning Africa, Asia, Europe and parts of Latin America — for more than a century. Today, the country is the world's seventh-largest economy, just behind India, and a major pillar of the European Union. France remains a global leader of culture, arts and the sciences. It receives the most tourists in the world, and in 2018 it won its second soccer World Cup.
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More from France
If more colonists had shared Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza’s philosophy, Africa would be a very different place.
Chad was the first French colony to break from Vichy France and support the resistance leader.
When revolutionary France put away the guillotine, new-found freedom was expressed with seriously bizarre fashion statements.
- Rising Stars
Writer-cartoonist Pénélope Bagieu renders the lives of female heroes and artists one panel at a time.
French schoolchildren still learn about Leon Gambetta’s famous escape.
- Fast Forward
In one of Europe’s most restrictive states, some are saying oui to a new farming future. But not everyone is on board.
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