All posts tagged: Osez le Feminisme

Better Know a French Woman: George Sand

After researching several ‘grands hommes’ for Better Know a Frenchman, my series about the people behind the names on streets signs and buildings all across France, I found out about FemiCité, a feminist movement to put more WOMEN’S names in those places of honor. In solidarity, I have decided to begin highlighting amazing French Women along with the Frenchmen I have already been profiling. Who do you think deserves recognition?! Leave a comment! George Sand Lived: 1804- 1876 Spotted: rue George Sand is in Paris’ 16th arrondissement and a handful of cities across France including Tours, Le Havre, and Voirons. A quick search turned up about three or four lycées named for her in all of France. Important Contributions: George Sand is the pseudonym for the controversial writer, essayist, and “romantic rebel” Amantine-Lucile-Aurore Dupin who wrote over 80 novels, dozens of plays, and thousands of letters during her lifetime. Her first independent novel, Indiana (1832), is about a woman in a passionless marriage, and broadly addresses themes such as female desire, social constraints concerning women in marriage, and women’s equality in …

Better Know a French…WOMAN!

I’ve been trying to regularly contribute to Better Know a Frenchman, my series about the people behind the names on streets signs and buildings all across France. Shortly after I started the series, I found out about a feminist movement to put more WOMEN’S names in those places of honor. FémiCité is a project by the group Osez le féminisme ! (roughly, Dare to be Feminist!)*. According to their website, out of 63,500 streets in all of France, 20,000 are named for men while only 1,270 bear the name of a woman! 1,270! That is barely 2%! Or as they say, “That’s 2% of streets dedicated to half of humanity.” They also note that of the 302 metro stations in Paris’ extensive system, only three bear women’s names. And of those three, there is a single station where that woman does not share the name with a man! (Interestingly, one of the most recently built tram lines has 9 stations with women’s names, among them Rosa Parks and Ella Fitzgerald.) The problem here is obvious. The names we …