Josephine Baker Posted by Tim Hildreth on Aug 24, 2021 in Culture, Music, News
Connaissez-vous Josephine Baker?1Do you know Josephine Baker? Born in 1906 into a poor family in Mississippi, she would grow up to conquer France … and to help conquer the Nazis. And now this woman of many firsts, is about to conquer one more first.
Thanks to the writer Laurent Kupferman and his Osez Joséphine2Go ahead/Be bold/Dare Josephine petition, Josephine Baker will soon become the first femme noire3Black woman to be enterrée4buried in the Pantheon. The ceremony, planned for November 30th, will see Josephine be the 6th woman honored with a place among the greats of France.
Danseuse et chanteuse5Dancer and singer, Josephine was also une mère de famile, activiste pour les doits civiques aux cotes de Martin Luther King, et membre de la résistance française6a mother, civil rights activist, and member of the French Resistance who was given the Légion d’honneur for her efforts on behalf of her adopted country during la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale.
The video below features a later-in-life performance by Josephine of one of her signature songs J’ai deux amours (mon pays et Paris)7I have two loves (my country and Paris). This link will take you to a short video overview of Josephine’s life from the French social media/blogging site Brut.
Originally intended as une église royale8a royal church, the building, begun in 1757 under Louis XV, would become in 1791 under the revolutionary government un temple républicain dédié aux personnalités exceptionnelles qui contribuent à la grandeur de la France9a republican temple to the exceptional personalities who contribute to the grandeur of France.
Sitting atop the Montagne Sainte-Geneviève in Paris’s 5ème arrondissement, Le Panthéon houses the remains of some of France’s greatest thinkers. To date, only 5 women (soon to be 6 with the arrival en novembre de Josephine) have had the honor of joining the male writers, philosophers, and scientists who can be found there.
Fittingly (since the Pantheon is a temple to the power of thought), the Pantheon is also home to an intriguing “science experiment”. Hanging in the middle of the main floor you can see le pendule de Foucault designed to show the rotation of the earth. See more here and here.
Between 2019 and 2020 Alice et moi released two similarly titled singles: J’en ai rien à faire and Je n’ai rien à faire (click the links to see the videos). While the titles sound similar, they mean very different things.
Je n’ai rien à faire means I have nothing to do (perhaps a reaction to being locked down during Covid?) while J’en ai rien à faire (the original song) means I could care less/I don’t care about that.
Watch out when using them to be sure you’re saying the right thing!
- 1Do you know Josephine Baker?
- 2Go ahead/Be bold/Dare Josephine
- 3Black woman
- 5Dancer and singer
- 6a mother, civil rights activist, and member of the French Resistance
- 7I have two loves (my country and Paris)
- 8a royal church
- 9a republican temple to the exceptional personalities who contribute to the grandeur of France
- 10Alice and me … in reality just one person. Alice’s nom de scène or stage name reflects the different sides of her personality.
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Grace a votre blog j’ai une nouvelle chanteuse favorite! (Alice et moi est vraiment super!) Son nouvelle album DRAMA est le meilleur!
@bota Merci! Je n’ai pas encore écouter Drama mais je vais l’essayer.