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Then president François Mitterrand established the Haut Conseil de la Francophonie in 1984, which sponsors summit meetings among French-speaking countries. Numerous national symbols are associated with the French Revolution, which established the nation as a democratic republic at the end of the eighteenth century.
They were further reinforced during the Third Republic at the turn of the twentieth century.
The most recent update of national language policy regarding education came in 1995, permitting the teaching of regional languages at the primary and secondary levels. The nation historically has been divided into two linguistic regions: that of the langue d'oeil to the north and that of the langue d'oc to the south.
National identity is closely identified with the French language.
The population has more than doubled since the mid-nineteenth century, when it was 28.3 million.
The post–World War II period saw fertility increases in the French version of the baby boom, but the birthrate began to drop in the early 1970s. At the turn of the twentieth century and after World War I, migration accounted for half the total population growth. The official language is French, which is by far the majority language, having been imposed on the regional populations since the nineteenth century.
The Toubon law of 1994 mandates that French be spoken in all official, public spheres of life.
France borders Andorra, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Monaco, Spain, and Switzerland.
These DOMs operate primarily as departments within the national system.
There are two territorial collectives: Mayotte and Saint Pierre-et-Miquelon.
It gradually was introduced as a more widespread term to denote that territory, formerly known as Gaul, after the Frankish invasion and the retreat of the Romans.
The name "Francia" was applied to various territorial units until the Middle Ages, when it came to signify the kingdom of the French sovereign.
France has a large range of terrain and a varied climate and geography.