Tag Archives: France

French – German: Stereotypes

Yesterday we had another meeting with our German-French group. We talked extensively about stereotypes and the German and French culture.

At the beginning Leonie wanted to know how we imagine a typical French person, Tim said that the first thing he thinks of is a man with a striped shirt, a beret and a baguette under his arm. To our disappointment, Leonie pointed out that at most a few girls wear them and then only in Paris. She said in general that many French stereotypes only apply to Paris rather than the rest of the country. Another cliché that came to mind was that French people don’t like to speak English – according to Leonie, it’s primarily not because they don’t like it, but that they can’t or have a hard time with the pronunciation. For Tim, the typical public demonstrations in France were another distinctive behavior that he associates with France. From the other French girls I met in Tampere, I learned that the French love tarte – whether sweet or savory, there is almost always a tarte. Also, Leonie has pointed out to us that if we are ever in France must necessarily try frogs or snails, as these are also typical French specialties – I think here I will have to pass, however.

For Leonie, a typical German is dressed in lederhosen and drinking beer. I think this image of Germans still persists worldwide. However, lederhosen are only typical clothing in southern Germany and are mainly worn in Bavaria at traditional festivals like Oktoberfest. Of course, we also got to the classic cultural points like punctuality for Germany and disorganization for French. We ended up with the working conditions; Leonie told us that the unstructuredness of the French comes from the fact that they are always stressed because they work six days a week. In Germany, on the other hand, they only work five days a week. However, in both countries the standard working time is 40 hours per week. Most of the clichés surrounding France come from the capital, Paris, and the behavior of the citizens there. In Germany, on the other hand, life and mentality in Berlin is very different from the rest of the country, even though it is the capital and the seat of government.

In the end we had a long discussion about different types of bread with some difficulties in understanding, that was very funny and led to lots of different photos of baguettes in our WhatsApp chat – but now we know that a baguette like we have in Germany is actually not a real baguette compared to the typical French baguette.

French – German: Listening to Music

Unfortunately, we could not meet now for some time. Therefore, it was all the happier that it finally worked out again today and we have seen or heard us once again.

Since we have already discussed many general topics and I have seen in the blog posts of others that they have listened to music, we have also decided to do so.

We listened to some different songs from various styles from France and Germany and tried to translate them.

Among others, Leonie showed us the song La vie en rose by Édith Piaf, which is known mainly from French films or films set in France. The song is about seeing life through rose-colored glasses. She also showed us two cool (pop) rap songs, Je m’en tape by OBOY and Toutes les couleurs by Ninho. As with the German rap songs, we had to realize that the lyrics in rap songs often don’t make sense. However, we liked the sound of the French rap songs much better than the common German ones.

We showed her Roller by Apache 207 a well-known German rap song, but it really makes no sense at all. We could only explain that it was about scooters.

We also let her hear Pocahontas by AnnenMayKantenreit. A song about a failed relationship, but it doesn’t sound as sad as the lyrics make it sound. Leonie even knew this song.

Of course, a typical German “Schlager” song could not be missing! We have chosen Atemlos by Helene Fischer, which is played especially at the Oktoberfest up and down.

Leonie showed us then finally Sous les sunlights des Tropiques by Gilbert Montagné what is a French hit song about dancing in the sun.

It was really very interesting to hear the French songs. I could imagine to include one or  other song of OBOY in my Spotify playlist, because I really liked the style of his song.

French – German: Skills, Education and Professional Talks

Yesterday, we had another meeting to teach and learn French and German.

Before our professional meeting – like I would name our yesterday’s lesson – started we talked again about the cooking session we are planning to do next weekend. Tim and I already decided on two German recipes we want to give to Leonie, Leonie will give us a selection from which we can choose from on our next meeting at the middle of the upcoming week. There, we will then translate the recipes so that we know what we need to buy until Saturday.

After that we started our professional meeting. We planned to do some professional talk. So, basically speaking about skills, professions, education etc. – kind of our CV. It was not only really interesting to get known to the specific words in French, but also to see what the others of us already have done, learned and worked. Again, there came up some difficulties in translating words, as some of the words or processes are only in Germany. For example, it is unique in Europe, that you can do a so-called apprenticeship. An apprenticeship is a special type of education, where you work in a company. You also get paid for that, but additionally visit a vocational school to learn theoretical stuff and also how to use programs, tools etc. in your daily work life. After you have finished your apprenticeship, you can directly start working in this profession. Normally, it takes about three years to get this qualification. This type of education is especially for people, who don’t have Abitur (A Level degree) and therefore are not able to go to an university.

After talking about that, we also talked about the different graduation levels in Germany and France, and how you can achieve them. During this we found out, that there are a lot of similiarities in both countries – Leonie said, the system changed in France and she has the feeling like they just copied the German school system. Furthermore, in both countries, the degrees are at different difficulty levels depending on the region. For example, the final exams in France are most difficult in Paris and in Germany in Bavaria.

French – German: A colourful mixture of phrases

After nearly two weeks we had our third meeting today. We were talking about going to a restaurants and also how to order there and saying what you like or dislike. Once again, we have become aware of some things that we have never noticed in everyday use of the German language, but which are very difficult to explain to a non-native speaker. I don’t know if German is really that much harder to learn than French in terms of grammar or if we just notice it more here. I have the feeling that we do a little bit easier with the French pronunciation at every meeting. However, it is always very difficult for us Germans to understand why something is pronounced the way it is, because there are some peculiarities when a letter is omitted or pronounced. With some words, e.g. poivre (=pepper), you pronounce the r, but not the e – that feels to me like I’m about to have a knot in my tongue. Also, we realized today that we’ve never talked about common phrases of politeness, like Please, Thank you, Congratulations, etc., so we made this up.
Until our next meeting, everyone is looking for a recipe about a typical dish from their home country, which we then want to translate at our next meeting and cook “together” the week after – I am already very excited about what delicious stuff we will make.

#10 Goodbye party

[10] 16.5 Tue 19:00-21:00 Goodbye party

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We came to TAMK to memorize our moments at TAMK. This would be our last time for each one teach one. It is sad that we have to say goodbye to each other now but I believe someday we can meet somewhere and keep in touch on Facebook. We are already good friends and I will miss each member of our group. I was so lucky to get this chance to meet this people and learn more things from them than just the culture and language. I won’t forget these precious moments with Guillaume, Hyunsoo and Jieun. I had really comfortable classes thanks to Hyunsoo and Jieun and I got more affection to France by Guillaume so much. He was our best teacher and also best student with regard to France. I will think of his passion to classes and K-pops as well.

#9 Korean playing culture by Jieun

[9] 12.5 Fri 14:00-16:00 Korean playing culture by Jieun

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We didn’t have much time to meet again now because Hyunsoo would leave 17th of May and the rest of us also in 2 or 3 more weeks. I felt our time disappeared in an instant. This time Jieun brought Korean room culture to hang out. I didn’t realize that Korea is full of entertaining places like these much before she taught them. She prepared a bundle of rooms Korea has commonly.

PC room : consisting of hundreds of computers with cheap price and foods we can enjoy.

Singer room : similar to garaoke but more focused on fun and various scale from small to large.

Comicbook café : plenty of comicbooks to read under limited time that we paid.

Escape room : we need to escape from the room using some tools prepared in the room

Multi room : Nintendo wii, X box and playstation for playing

Public sauna : hot sauna, ice sauna, common area with TV, restaurant, game place and hot bath

Pet café : café with dogs, cats, sheep, raccoon, even turtle of some amphibian

Making café : many themes to make rings, pottery, cakes, cellphone case and so on

Counseling café : we can take some tests or counsel in cozy atmosphere

She also introduced Korean holidays designated as national holidays especially New Year’s Day, and Chuseok(Korean Thanksgiving Day). In lunar New Year’s Day we eat tteokguk(ricecake soup Hyunsoo taught us before) and it is considered that we get one year older by eating it and Korean call it sebae to bow older people in that day. In Chuseok, we also have special foods called songpyeon, which is a half-moon shaped ricecake with the smell of pine and Ganggangsullae, Korean traditional play for that day. Actually it is not common these days so I just knew that Ganggangsullae is for Chuseok. I got new information even of Korea thanks to her.

#8 Making Tteokbboki and curry

[8] 16.4 Sun, 12:00-15:30 Making Tteokbboki and curry

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We went to Jieun’s home for lunch. Jieun had gotten a parcel from her boyfriend and she wanted to share one of it for us, especially for Guillaume to experience Korean foods. Tteokbboki is a simple cuisine which uses ricecake and Gochujang(Korean red pepper sauce). And Hyunsoo and me took noodle, eggs and cheese to make it better. Guillaume cooked French curry in his way putting some coconut milk in it. Both of them were awesome and I was nearly crying to have them. We tried Mammi there, too. I got some piece of Mammi from my other friends and wanted Guillaume, Hyunsoo and Jieun to taste it for Easter. We ate it with milk but we thought we needed some other ingredient to feel it in real Finnish way. After that, we had a bus in 40 min to leave and took some rest. Hyunsoo, Jieun and me chatted for a while and Guillaume not being there for some time just appeared and said that he had fell asleep because Jieun’s bed was nicely warm to do that due to her electric blanket. We laughed to see him look so excited with it.

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#7 Eating out at Plevna

[7] 12.4 Wed, 19:00-22:00 Eating out at Plevna

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We met to have dinner to feel the Finnish restaurant. We got together a month after the last class so we talked about many things of our daily life. Guillaume’s family had come and he gave us madeleine(French desserts) which he had asked his parents for us. It was really delicious and I appreciated his kindness. And France and Korea would have an election to get a president each so we had a chat about it. Whereas Korea’s election is held only once for one president, France has a special form of election. In France, they have two-time of election. If they have a candidate getting more than half of votes, he or she would be a president. However if not, they have one more election between the two most supported candidates and one of them would be a president. It sounded like a survival. Anyway we had some foods that had potatoes, hams and eggs with some sauce. Surely with some beers except me who don’t like drinking that much. Each dish was much and heavy so we couldn’t make them finished and kept having a conversation for more hours.

#6 Korean foods by Hyunsoo

[6] 11.3 Sat, 14:00-19:00 Korean foods by Hyunsoo

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Waiting for Guillaume

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Hyunsoo taught us about Korean foods. Even though I knew all of them, I really wanted to try them because it had been already 3 months to live in Tampere. All of us missed Korean food and that situation was so fun. It looked hard to explain the type of Korean food in English because it doesn’t have proper words for this kind of food but Hyunsoo explained them in the best way. So we can feel the whole food in the PPT. In the PPT, there were three main parts; main dish, side dish and desserts.

Main dish was composed rice, rice soup, rice cake soup and soup with dumpling. And side dish was more that those because Korean people eat numerous side dishes at once mainly with the rice. 국(Guk, common soup), 탕(Tang, stiff soup), 찌개 (jjigae, stew), 구이 (gui, grilled dish) 전(Jeon, pancake), 국수(Guksu, noodle), 찜(jjim, steamed dish), 조림(jorim, food boiled down in soy sauce or other seasonings), 나물(namul, vegetables), 튀김(tuigim, friew food), 젓갈(jeotgal, salted seafood), 김치(Kimchi, Korean traditional cabbage cuisine). They made me drool over a lot and even now writing this I got hungry. And for the traditional desserts, Hyunsoo introduced 떡(tteok, ricecake), 엿(yeot, taffy), and 화채(Hwachae, fruit salad). She showed us also the most famous food like Kimchi, Bulgogi and Bibimbap. The last things were Korean drinks such as soju and makgeoli followed by her favorite foods 삼겹살, 막창, 곱창 which are specific part of meat. She also prepared a lot of video but there was the most impressive one to us where a foreign guy ate all Korean foods with satisfied face. His eyes were always glittering when he saw the foods.

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You should try Korean BBQ someday if you read this now!!

 

#5 Korean cities to travel by Daye

[5] 19.2 Sun, 14:00-19:00 Korean cities to travel by Daye

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I had prepared a PPT admiring Guillaume’s special presentation. It was not as good as his but I picked some cities that many Korean go to travel to introduce them to him. Actually looking for some nice videos which can show spectacular views of Korea, I had thought that we don’t have many professional ones in English compared to France. I chose 22 cities and guided him with brief explanation including some festivals held in each city. Thanks to Hyunsoo and Jieun, my lecture had been completed well. It had quite many places and videos that my laptop went out sadly. Anyway I was so happy that Guillaume said to thank me for the PPT.

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We had really long lecture today, sometimes it happens to be in a small talk far from the subject for a while. However, the obvious thing is that all the time we took there was fun. 😀