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Lessons in French
"An appealing debut novel...Paris entrances" - Editor's Choice, Oprah.com
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Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Created: 10/17/14

Replies: 11

Posted Oct. 17, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

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Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Because Lessons in French is set in 1989-90, before the advent of cell phones and social media, Kate is truly immersed in her experience of Paris and the Schell household. Although she can write and receive letters and make the occasional expensive phone call, she has none of the instant connectedness that travelers have today. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?


Posted Oct. 23, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
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Miznanner

Join Date: 01/19/13

Posts: 20

RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Oh, i think it most definitely changes her experience. While having the answers to questions right at our fingertips may make travel easier, i also think that it can make us lazy travelers. Kate's experiencewas perhaps richer and more fraught with a sense of being truly immersed. She also could not escape the tension by withdrawing into a virtual world-- instead she had to look outward and make actual connections.


BooksBooksBooks!
Posted Oct. 24, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mariannes

Join Date: 12/17/12

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RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

I think cell phones affect convenience more than anything else. When we were in Italy, my sister-in-law never managed to get a working cellphone. Consequently, we spent some of our limited time trying to find each other. I think a person living in almost any country today who doesn't have access to social media would really be out of touch with the country. Some people withdraw to a virtual world, but that isn't something a person has to do.


Posted Oct. 26, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
pennyp

Join Date: 03/22/12

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RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Technology can be good or bad depending on how it is used. When we travel we try only to use it when contact with home is needed. We try to go with the information that is available to use through local media so we have that local cultural experience. As anyone who has traveled knows, most countries are really not focused on what is going on in the US. While it would be easy to get that info with today's technology, we really try not to live in both worlds when we travel.


Posted Oct. 27, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
susanr

Join Date: 04/14/11

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RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

I agree, without a cell phone and social media, it is easier to get more immersed in the culture you are visiting. We have traveled to Europe with and without cell phones. When we didn't have phones, we relied on local papers for our information and knew very little of what was going on in the rest of the world. With cell phones, you are connected to home - which isn't always a good thing. For Kate, I think her experience in Paris could have been very different if she could have texted her friends or her mom on a regular basis.


Posted Oct. 27, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
LindaB.

Join Date: 06/11/14

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RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

I think that people would have found out "secrets" about what was going on much quicker than during this age without social media and cell phones. When I travel, I do have my cell phone with me and tend to check in at the end of the day to find out what is going on back home. Just a habit, I guess.


Posted Oct. 27, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 294

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RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Prior to cell phones and text messages I think travel could seem more exotic. Home seemed further away. while a cell phone can provide a sense of safety, I think travel could seem more exotic prior to the days when everyone had a cell phone.


Posted Oct. 27, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Hulananni

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 42

RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Without today's technology Kate was more immersed in the surroundings ((although often oblivious to the reality of what was in front of her nose.)


Posted Nov. 02, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
laurieh

Join Date: 04/04/12

Posts: 17

RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

There were times when I was thinking, "just FaceTime them"! Kate had to think more about her situation without the instant possibility of access to Oliver, Portis and Her Aunt and Uncle. Lydia could have kept a better eye on Clarence with "find my phone." It's almost impossible to keep anything. Secret in this age of technology.


Posted Nov. 19, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
theresex

Join Date: 05/21/11

Posts: 18

RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

Having only one foot in the "wonderful world of technology" I enjoyed reading a story that happened before all the "constant connection" of being tethered to technology changed our lives. People moved around and went places and interacted without looking for a place to charge their cellphones. However, I must confess that I conformed when my husband went to visit his family in France and we were separated. He showed me the wonders of SKYPE, which was lovley though it meant living a month in two different time zones. However, I can't see how our technology would have improved this story because it was engrossing and held my interest just as it was.


Thérèse~X.
Posted Nov. 29, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
shirleyf

Join Date: 04/25/11

Posts: 31

RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

I think that the lack of cell phones and current technology made Kate's experience richer as she had to interact with people on a daily basis rather than just texting or calling them. It enabled the story and characters to unfold without having all their secrets bared up front. In my trips to Europe, I find myself savoring the experiences of the moment rather than worrying about connecting to the folks back in the US and my life there takes on an unhurried pace as I get into the rhythm of the place and the people of the area.


Posted Dec. 02, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
heatherf

Join Date: 11/13/14

Posts: 17

RE: Kate's time in Paris was before cell phones and social media. How do you think this affects her experience? How has technology affected your own experience of travel or living abroad?

I find even a camera can start pulling me away from the experience. And she definitely had to complete her tasks in a much more involved way.


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