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A global opinion poll for the BBC saw France ranked as the country with the fourth most positive influence in the world (behind Germany, Canada and the UK) in 2014.The Académie française sets an official standard of language purity; however, this standard, which is not mandatory, is occasionally ignored by the government itself: for instance, the left-wing government of Lionel Jospin pushed for the feminisation of the names of some functions (madame la ministre) while the Académie pushed for some more traditional madame le ministre.In April 2001, the Minister of Education, Jack Lang, admitted formally that for more than two centuries, the political powers of the French government had repressed regional languages.
In French schools, pupils are expected to learn at least two foreign languages, the first of which is typically German or English.
A revision of the French constitution creating official recognition of regional languages was implemented by the Parliament in Congress at Versailles in July 2008.
The importance of French culture has waxed and waned over the centuries, depending on its economic, political and military importance.
French culture today is marked both by great regional and socioeconomic differences and strong unifying tendencies.
A 2011 European poll found that a third (33%) of the French population "does not believe there is any sort of spirit, God or life force.
France guarantees freedom of religion as a constitutional right, and the government generally respects this right in practice.A long history of violent conflict between groups led the state to break its ties to the established Catholic Church early in the last century, which previously had been the state religion.The government adopted a strong commitment to maintaining a totally secular public sector.The Toubon law, from the name of the conservative culture minister who promoted it, makes it mandatory to use French in advertisements directed to the general public.Note that contrary to some misconceptions sometimes found in the Anglophone media, the French government neither regulates the language used by private parties in commercial settings, nor makes it compulsory that France-based WWW sites should be in French.Together, they cited 7 How marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback.This article has over 172,300 views and 93% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. It is common to experience culture shock when living in a foreign country for an extended period of time.By adapting to a foreign culture, you can overcome your culture shock and develop meaningful relationships with those around you, rather than feeling anxious and confused in your new space.Before you go anywhere, read articles or books about important cultural traditions or customs.France is a secular country where freedom of thought and of religion is preserved, by virtue of the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen.The Republic is based on the principle of laïcité, that is of freedom of religion (including of agnosticism and atheism) enforced by the Jules Ferry laws and the 1905 law on the separation of the State and the Church, enacted at the beginning of the Third Republic (1871–1940).