Maître Mô: a French lawyer's moving account of day-to-day misery in court


French lawyer Jean-Yves Moyart attracted tens of thousands of regular readers to a blog he ran, beginning in 2008, in which he detailed his experiences of the everyday functioning and failings of the justice system in France, the often severe treatment meted out to the socially modest, and the difficulties of his job. The runaway success of his blog led to the publication of extracts in a book released in 2011. Now, following his death from cancer earlier this year, a new selection of his writings appear in a book published this month, reviewed here by Mediapart’s legal affairs correspondent Michel Deléan.  

French 'philosopher' disowns son over autobiographical novel

France — Link

Jean-Paul Enthoven, 71, has publicly disowned his equally famous son Raphaël, not for previously stealing his ex-girlfriend Carla Bruni, but for writing a book he says has left him 'heartbroken', slamming it for revealing people’s private lives in public.

French publisher recounts how paedophile author abused her at 14

France — Link

A forthcoming book by French publisher Vanessa Springora in which she gives a disturbing account of how in the 1980s she became mentally and sexually abused at the age of 14 by acclaimed author Gabriel Matzneff, then aged 50, a self-confessed paedophile who groomed young girls and boys, is shaking Paris literary circles which previously gave him support and protection.

Former French president Hollande in bitter attack on Macron

France — Link

In a series of interviews to promote his first book after leaving power last year when he was succeeded by Emmanuel Macron, his economy minister who some had maintained was his dauphin, former French president François Hollande accused the new head of state of deepening social inequalities through tax cuts that help the wealthy and business corporations.

The pain of being fat in France: one woman's story

France — Link

Gabrielle Deydier, 38, who is 1m53 tall and weighs 150 kilos, has been propelled into the French media spotlight with her book published this year about what it is like to be distinctly obese in a country where the condition is a barrier to employment and prompts insults from strangers, and which led her to consider suicide before penning her account of 'grossophobia' which she says 'saved my life'.   

Hollande in revived controversy over 'toothless' jibe about the poor

France — Link

In a book of conversations with journalists to be published Thursday, the French president claimed his former partner Valérie Trierweiler betrayed him by misconstruing his description of the poor as 'toothless', but on Wednesday she revealed what she said was a text message from him using the term in a derogatory manner.

Firefighting French sociologist rings a political alarm


Romain Pudal is a sociologist with the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and also, since 2002, a voluntary firefighter. Last month he published an ethnographic study of his fellow firefighters in which he opens up a world that, beyond the clichés and folklore, is largely little understood in both its composition and outlook. Joseph Confavreux argues that Pudal’s book, which he presents here, makes for edifying reading on the political and social tensions that grip contemporary France, and also on the fragmentation of its lower social classes.

The disturbing case of French journalists’ ‘blackmail’ of Moroccan king


In a case as bizarre as it is unusual, two French journalists were last month arrested in a luxurious Paris hotel on suspicion of the attempted blackmail of Morocco's King Mohammed VI. Éric Laurent and Catherine Graciet are accused by the Moroccan authorities of demanding 3 million euros in exchange for not publishing their book of damaging revelations about the Rabat regime. Mediapart has obtained access to documents from the French judicial investigation which demonstrate that the case is far more complex than it first appeared. Sting or set-up? Michel Deléan reports.

French journalists accused of trying to blackmail Moroccan king

France — Link

Two writers face probe after allegedly asking for money in exchange for not publishing 'damaging' book about King Mohammed VI.

Valérie Trierweiler's bestseller on Hollande relationship to be made into film

France — Link

Film based on former First Lady's scathing memoir about her stormy relationship with president will be produced by a close friend.

France's neoliberal monarchy

France — Opinion

The publication of former 'First Lady' Valérie Trierweiler's book about her relationship with President François Hollande and their bitter break-up has provoked a media storm in France. Ordinarily, says Mediapart's editor François Bonnet, one would not be interested in the “bourgeois vaudeville” on show in 'Merci pour ce moment'. Except for the fact that its description of the president’s failings – his insincerity, political calculations and even lies – chime exactly with the recent statements of a string of politicians and former ministers who have worked closely with Hollande in government. In this respect, argues François Bonnet, the book provides the missing link in the story of François Hollande's “descent into hell”, leads to some important political questions and helps highlight how France has now become, in effect, a neoliberal monarchy.

France's Hollande says he will finish mandate and rejects 'anti-poor' jibe

France — Link

Beleaguered president says he was 'elected for five years by the French people' and that serving the poor is the 'reason for my existence'.

Ex-French First Lady says President Hollande despises the poor

France — Link

Valérie Trierweiler's claim that in private François Hollande jokingly refers to poor as 'the toothless' set to damage socialist leader.

France`s scorned former first lady publishes secret memoirs

France — Link

Publication of Valérie Trierweiler's 'truthful' account of her break-up with François Hollande is unlikely to improve president's image.

Hollande is 'nobody's president' says his former minister

France — Link

In a book out this week the Green party's Cécile Duflot says French president suffers from 'chronic indecisiveness' and cannot meet targets.