Thursday, 24 November 2011

I think therefore I am

Penser - to think.

je             pense
tu             penses
il/elles      pense
nous         pensons
vous         pensez
ils/elles    pensent

The verb penser is a regular "er" verb. I think, you think, etc, etc.

The Thinker by Auguste Rodin.

Frenchman August Rodin sculpted The Thinker in 1902 out of bronze and marble. The statue has become a symbol for philosophy and depicts a man in deep thought, battling with an internal struggle. The statue was originally intended to be Dante in the front of the gates of hell, as described in his epic poem The Divine Comedy. The Thinker is now in the Musee Rodin in Paris, more information at Musee Rodin.

It was French philosopher and writer Rene Descartes who said I think therefore I am, or as he originally put it "je pense donc je suis" (present tense first person of penser and etre,) in the early 1600s. Descartes is a very important figure in the field of philosophy and was also an influential mathematician. He is credited with the introduction of analytic geometry, which then led on to the discovery of calculus. 

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

The verb être

être - to be

je           suis
tu           es
il/elle      est
nous       sommes
vous       êtes
ils/elles    sont

The present tense of the verb être - to be. I am, you are, etc, etc. It really helps if you know the most commonly used verbs, helps when you are trying to speak French that is. 

Almond branches in bloom by Vincent Van Gogh.

The BBC has a brilliant site for help with learning French at BBC/languages/french

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

People First Not Finance

PEOPLE are out on the streets in Nice this week, making peaceful protests against banks for causing financial and economic crisis.

The protests come a few days before a meeting of finance ministers and banking big-wigs of the G20 nations in nearby Cannes. One protester made the point that the so called leaders of nations don't really care about the people, but only about the financial world.

People have come from Germany, Italy and Spain to voice their disgust at corporate greed.