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Episode 33: “A Tour de France – Montgeron”

“We shall see much, but learn very little.” – Jean Ognier

Hello everyone! After a much needed vacation, I’m excited to return with a brand new miniseries: our very own Tour de France. What kind of France exists outside the boundaries of Paris? What kind of France exists in the middle of the countryside? What does someone in Paris have in common with someone in the Pyrenées? How many kinds of French people are there? What makes someone truly “French” anyway? For the next six episodes, we’ll be tracing the route of the original Tour de France, traveling through the “in between places” – the vast countryside which traditionally held most of the French population. Beginning in the tiny village of Montgeron, then passing through Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Nantes and finally returning to Paris, we’ll be eating, drinking and exploring our way through the nation. On y va!

Episode 33: “A Tour de France – Montgeron”

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Episode 32: Le Code du Travail

“We have never retreated from anything, ever.” – Stéphane Sirot, labor historian Hello everyone! This week’s episode is a bit timelier than usual – I thought it would be an interesting experiment to dive deeper into some of France’s biggest headlines today. As the French return from their holidays and I prepare to leave for

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Episode 31: Le Train Bleu

“A line of railway tracks, like a zipper, speeding open to the south, to Marseille, to Nice and the Côte d’Azur” – Sylvia Plath, 1956 Hello everyone! This week’s episode is a bit late, as a certain podcast host’s bathtub stopped working, flooded her entire apartment, and delayed things a wee bit. Thanks for your

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Episode 30: The History Of The Picnic

“A Moveable Feast.” – Ernest Hemingway We have a new milestone! This week, The Land of Desire will reach a quarter of a million downloads – absolutely incroyable. Thank you to everyone who participated in The Land of Desire’s anniversary celebrations, and to those of you who shared my series on how to start a podcast, and

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Episode 29: La Zoologie – “The Caves”

“We are locked in history and they were not.” – Werner Herzog We’re back! Thank you to everyone who participated in The Land of Desire’s anniversary celebrations. Extra thanks to those of you who shared my series on how to start a podcast, and those of you who contributed to the show’s Patreon page. This

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Episode 28: “Bon Anniversaire!”

“Bienvenue and welcome to The Land of Desire.” – me, 7/14/2016 WE DID IT! This Friday, The Land of Desire officially turns one year old! I’m completely blown away by everything that’s happened in the last year – getting featured on the iTunes Store, getting played on the CBC (twice!), getting to hear from fans all

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Episode 27: “We’ll Always Have Paris: Paris Syndrome”

“Nobody goes there anymore. It’s too crowded.” – Yogi Berra This week, we’ll wrap up our series “We’ll Always Have Paris” focusing on the history of tourism in France. Paris is in many ways a city constructed by and for tourism: tourism shapes which landmarks are preserved, which civic resources are available, and whose needs are prioritized.

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Episode 26: “We’ll Always Have Paris: A Visit from Hitler”

“Everyone in Paris once.” – German military catchphrase This week, we’ll continue our series “We’ll Always Have Paris” focusing on the history of tourism in France. Tuesday was D-Day, so let’s take a look at an understudied element of the hospitality industry: occupation tourism. What happens when an entire army comes to town? What happens when your conquerors

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