Communicating with the French Descriptive Essay

A paper on the differences in American and French communication styles, and the various "faux pas" to avoid.
# 145670 | 1,145 words | 10 sources | MLA | 2010 | US
Published on Nov 22, 2010 in Communication (Interpersonal) , Language (French: General)

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The writer, in an informal and humorous manner, attempts to shed light on the culture, values, rituals, and attitudes of the French with the aim of preventing an American from having a communications disaster. The writer points out France's implicit style of communication, the low volume of speech, and the benefits of speaking in their native language. The writer further describes proper workplace behavior, acceptable greetings, and when eye contact is acceptable. The writer explains the role of food and meals in France as well as the typical family relationships. The writer is certain that with a little research and a lot of patience, communication with the French can be accomplished.

From the Paper:

"An important trait to keep in mind is France's status as a high context society. This means that much of what they communicate is implicit as opposed to the U.S., where we are much more explicit. It's as essential to pay attention to what isn't said as to what is said, and to "read between the lines". Long term relationships are important to these cultures so they have an ability to understand much more between each other without using words.
"They tend to speak quieter than the typical American, and are sometimes offended at the volume we use. No raucous laughter with the French, they WON'T like it. They also have a smaller sense of personal space, so try not to be disturbed when they stand closer to you than you might normally expect. Maybe that has something to do with their softened speech!"

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Rochefort, Harriet Welty "Better understand France and the French...",
  • Priest, Matt "France- French Business Etiquette",
  • Roisin Saunier, "Living in France-Communicating with the French",
  • Hall, Brenda Townsend "Family Life Abroad - French Connections",
  • The World Language Fair - French, "French Culture Communications and Gestures",

Cite this Descriptive Essay:

APA Format

Communicating with the French (2010, November 22) Retrieved August 07, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Communicating with the French" 22 November 2010. Web. 07 August. 2020. <>