France inspires the world's imagination, but what inspires the French? FRANCE 24 journalist Joseph Bamat homes in on the French trends, big and small, that you should know about. From best sellers and chart toppers to opinion leaders and political contenders, the Fuss takes a wide temperature reading to find out what and who is hot in France.

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What the French got this Christmas: 2013 consumer trends

After struggling with recession in the first three months of 2013, France’s economy was finally picking up speed as the year came to a close. A look at who cashed in from the country’s modest return to economic growth.

Naming bébé

Want your newborn to get a classy start in life with a Frenchy sounding name? Then forget Margot and Pierre. Here is a list of the most popular names for babies in France.

France's sexist National Assembly

An MP from the right-wing UMP party has been sanctioned with a cut to his monthly pay after clucking like a chicken during a speech by a woman, in what was only the latest sexist outburst at the National Assembly in recent times.

French finally embrace 'French kissing'

It’s one of the most eagerly-awaited lists to appear each year in France, rivaling the official selection of Cannes and the Michelin Guide: the new words inscribed into the French dictionary, which this year includes "galocher" or to French kiss.


While American cooking is the object of much derision in France, the Mecca of gastronomie, it has gotten so that you can't walk a few blocks in Paris without getting whacked in the face with some American-inspired ground-round.

Women-only election brawl brewing in Paris

With presidential elections still four years away, French political addicts are turning their attention to mayoral elections in just over 12 months. In Paris, candidates are taking positions in what will likely be a women-only battle.

Where in the World is Gérard Depardieu?

France’s best known film star is on an international tour with the twin mission of dodging taxes and finding new best/worst friends.

What the French got for Christmas: Consumer trends 2012

For the second straight year The Fuss in France catalogs and breaks down some of the most-watched, best-selling and highest-grossing consumer items in France over the past 12 months.

The day French are allowed to pound wine

It’s big, it’s bad, it’s Beaujolais Nouveau. France’s most notorious red wine is French proof that rules are made to be broken.

‘Friendly’ Hollande shows off his English skills to Obama

With one well intentioned but incorrect letter to Barack Obama, President François Hollande has joined a long and proud tradition among French politicians of murdering the English language.

Feminists with no tops, no future flash France

Ukraine’s topless feminist movement Femen has landed in France and says it is ready to raise an “army of women” to fight the dictatorship of man. But are French women ready to disrobe and respond to their call of duty?

From tennis to pop star, Noah is No.1 in the hearts of French

Yannick Noah, who rose to prominence as a tennis star in the 1980s and '90s and then reinvented himself as a pop singer, has been crowned France’s most popular person for the fourth straight year. So what does it take to find fame in France?

French ministers say ‘bon voyage’ to carefree vacations

Following some summer flubs in preceding governments, French cabinet ministers have been told to enjoy their summer recess, but not to wander too far.

France’s First Dame Wrestles with Fame

Less than a month on the job, new First Lady Valérie Trierweiler is ruffling French feathers. Is she being unfairly player-hated or is she asking for trouble?

What the French want for Christmas: Consumer Trends 2011

Naughty or nice, the French want beaucoup treats for Christmas. While we don’t know exactly what’s on their wish lists, here are some of the best-sold and most-watched of 2011.

Strauss-Kahn finally spills the beans

A new book in France offers an alternative version of the licentious encounter between Dominique Strauss-Kahn and a hotel maid in New York, and says his uninhibited sexcapades are a thing of the past. One claim is as unlikely as the next.

Green provocateur

Green party presidential hopeful Eva Joly is at it again. Is her call to dump another French tradition of military observance guided by her sincere liberal bent or a phony attention-gathering strategy ahead of elections?

France frets over Tintin's Hollywood Adventure

Anywhere you look in France these days, Tintin is there. With innumerable legions of intergenerational Tintinophiles in the country, Spielberg's new movie starring the Belgian comic book hero is one of the most anticipated of the year.

The comeback kid

After gaining the trust of millions of left-wingers in France and winning the Socialist Party presidential primaries, François Hollande is the man of the hour. But it hasn’t always been so.

Socialist primaries: Lessons in the art of seduction

The candidates in the Socialist Party's primaries are quarreling over whether France's left should be hard or solid. The subtle difference speaks volumes to French leftists who are trying to find their match for next year's presidential election.