7 Reasons Why French Culture Is Important

French culture is everywhere. All around the world you’ll find French food, films, music, art, architecture, fashion, and design. Even the French language is spoken by millions of people globally. France for sure has one of the most widely consumed cultures in the world. But why? Why is French culture seen by so many to be so important? Well, let us tell you…

1. French Food is Incredible

A first reason why French culture is important is because French food is amazing.

French food is famous the world over. Almost everyone in the world knows French dishes like croissants, cassoulet, beef bourguignon, and soufflé. As well as French food, French drinks, such as Bordeaux red wine and champagne, are hugely famous. Not only is French food well known, but it is regarded as among one of the world’s best cuisines. This is a big reason why French culture is so important.

As well as French food being world famous and highly regarded, French culinary culture is also hugely influential. Many of the culinary traditions we take for granted, from how food is presented to the courses we eat, came from France.

The way French people eat, and how they view food within their culture, has had an enormous impact on the world. This is a further reason why French culture is seen as valuable.

All over the world you’ll find French restaurants. This shows the huge impact French food culture has had globally. Perhaps less obvious though, is the long history of French culinary culture influencing how people around the world eat. This is why French culture is important.

2. French Movies Are Hugely Influential

A second reason why French culture is important is because French cinema is hugely influential.

France has a long established and highly regarded film industry. Famous directors including Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Leos Carax, and Jean-Luc Godard are all French. Actors including Vincent Cassel, Gérard Depardieu, and Jean Reno are also French. Millions of people around the world enjoy French films and see them often as the antithesis to America’s Hollywood. The scale of France’s film industry, combined with its huge global reach, is a key reason why French culture is seen as important.   

Alongside having a world-renowned movie industry, French cinema has also been hugely influential. Among the first filmmakers of all time were the French Lumière brothers. French cinematic styles have influenced filmmakers all over the world for over a century.

The importance of French cinema is a big reason why French culture is considered so vital to the world.

3. French Music Is Enjoyed The World Over

A third reason why French culture is important is because French music has a worldwide reach.

France produces some of the best music in the world. French musicians, including Serge Gainsbourg, Johnny Hallyday and Daft Punk, are among the most famous musical artists in the world. Their music is enjoyed by millions and their musical styles have influenced huge numbers of other artists.  

French musicians are seen as being highly innovative and hugely pioneering, and this adds to why French culture is seen as important.

As well as having world renowned contemporary musicians, France has a long history of playing an important role in the world of music. French composers including Maurice Ravel and Hector Berlioz are still revered today. The legacy of French music can be felt going back centuries.

The musical styles, techniques, instrumentation, and compositions that have come out of France are considered some of the most important throughout history. This is why French culture is seen as so valuable.

4. France Has Some The World’s Greatest Artists

Another reason why French culture is important is because France has produced some of the greatest artists in the world.

French art is hugely famous. Major historical painters, including Paul Cézanne, Claude Monet, and Paul Gauguin, came from France. French artists were pioneers of influential art movements, including Romanticism, Cubism, and Post-Impressionism. It is generally agreed that France has had a major impact on art history, and this is a big reason why French culture is so important.

As well as French artists playing a major role over many centuries, contemporary French art is also highly regarded. French artists working today, including Pierre Soulages and Bernar Venet, are seen as being at the cutting edge of modern art. This further adds to France’s cultural importance.

Across France there are hugely important art museums. The Musee d’Orsay, Palais de Tokyo, and the Pompidou Centre in Paris are some of the most important artistic and cultural institutions in the world. The Musée d’art Contemporain de Lyon and the Musée d’art Contemporain de Bordeaux are also world leading art museums. The many world-class art institutions in France is another reason why the country is seen as a cultural powerhouse.

5. The French Language is Spoken Globally

One big reason why French culture is so important is because of the French language.

Over 97 million people around the world speak French. From France itself, to Canada, Africa, the Caribbean, South America, and the Pacific – French is the fifth most spoken language globally. As well as the millions of people who speak French as their first language, millions more speak French as a second language. Across the world, many people also set out to learn French and French language schools can be found in almost every country in the world.

French is seen as one of the world’s most important languages and this is a major reason why French culture is seen as valuable.

The French language plays a major role in international affairs. France is an official language of the United Nations, International Olympics Committee and FIFA – and there are many more global bodies that use French as a working language.  

The huge numbers of people that speak French, combined with its role as a working language in many international organisations, highlights the importance of French culture.

6. French Architecture Is Awe-Inspiring

One reason why French culture is important is because of French architecture.

France is renowned for its beautiful buildings. Major architectural landmarks such as the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, and the Pompidou Centre are famed as being some of the most incredible buildings in the world. French cities, including Paris, Lyon, and Toulouse, are considered some of most beautiful there are. The incredible architecture across France is one reason why the country’s culture is considered important.

French architects have, throughout history, been seen as some of the world’s most innovative and creative. Architectural styles, including Art Deco and Art Nouveau, originated in France and then spread around the world. Architects the world over have been influenced by French ideas about how building should look and function. This is one reason why French culture is so valuable.

7. France Is Renowned For Its Fashion and Design

A final reason why French culture is important is because of French fashion and design.

French fashion is world famous. Fashion companies, including Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Hermès, are considered some of the most iconic fashions brands there are. France is known for setting fashion trends. Paris Fashion Week is one of the most important dates in the fashion industry’s calendar. The role France plays in the global fashion industry shows how important its culture is.

As well as being renowned for fashion, French design is also world beating. French designs for everything from interiors to products are hugely influential. Many people around the world buy things made in France, or items in French styles, because they see them as eminently classy and timeless.

French culture is important because of the country’s long history as a world leader in fashion and design.


Duncan is the founder of Global Affairs Explained. With a fascination for international relations. global events, history and geo-politics, Duncan established Global Affairs Explained to provide concise guides and original research on current and historical events.

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