Ever since the start of the Baccalaureate in 1809, French children have learnt Philosophy. They have to be able to discuss a topic such as, ‘Can one ever be certain of being right?’. Every word must be considered, the pro’s and the con’s set forth and famous philosophers must be quoted. This is to teach French children to be able to analyse and to think through issues, so as to come to sensible decisions in a democratic society. A ramification of this means that any meeting can go on for hours as everyone wants to give his/her opinion and to examine all sides of the argument, even if it seems a simple decision needs to be made. French people have been trained to be able to speak 100 words where a British person would use just 10.

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