Eric Pape

Brigitte Bardot: Sex Kitten or Savior of Kittens?

Large photos of the youthful Brigitte Bardot compete with each other on the façade of a prominent store on the Champs-Élysées. They convey just how ahead of her time the film star was. Bardot's young face, body, fashion, and many styles look utterly contemporary. As Burbank, California–based film historian Ken Kramer notes of the old images of her: "That is what women look like now."

The Roundabout Way to Heal Pakistan

From the earthquake that ended the lives of 230,000 Haitians to the historic floodwaters that are putting nearly 14 million people at risk in Pakistan, it's a tumultuous year for the developing world and a trying one for the leaders of wealthy nations trying to help them.

Sarkozy Hires The Opposition

As Nicolas Sarkozy took in the political landscape on Bastille Day, he could be forgiven for his giddiness. The new president's approval ratings were in the stratosphere—nearing 70 percent in some polls—thanks in no small part to the new-look government he'd put together, one with an ethnic, racial and gender makeup far more reflective of modern France than any before (consider Rachida Dati, a daughter of North African immigrants, whom he appointed as minister of Justice).

The Costa del Norte

It's the summer of 2060 and you're heading off for your European beach vacation in ... Parmu. Never heard of it? You will. According to a recent EU report, the Mediterranean's multibillion-euro tourism industry will likely shift toward Europe's northern coasts in Scandinavia, the British Isles and the Baltics (home to Parmu and other up-and-coming beach towns like Palanga and Jurmala).

Vineyards On the Move

It sounds like a vintner's nightmare: Sharp shifts in temperature help trigger potent off-season rains that bloat grapes with unwanted moisture. Then an overpowering heat wave withers vines and shrivels grapes.

Oily Waters

Even now, the beaches and boats are smeared black with thick oil. The private stretch of oceanfront belonging to the luxury Mövenpick hotel lies empty and sticky with grime.

Sailing to Success

As Valencians watch some of the world's most high-tech sailboats run sprints on the Mediterranean, they hope to blow past a group of perennial losers: the hosts of sports spectacles.

His Way Works

Shortly after José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero became Spain's prime minister, his chief economic adviser ran a little business-school experiment. Go out and start a company, Miguel Sebastián told a handful of aides.

Helping Rwanda to Weep

There is rarely anything resembling a "full recovery" for genocide survivors. Visions of people slaughtered by machete, their bodies left strewn over church pews, don't just disappear.

Who's That Girl?

French politics has always been a manly world, no place more so than the Elysee Palace. Almost forever, it seems, France's presidents have been cut from similar cloth, distinguished by a shared hauteur if not grandeur, self-imagined or otherwise.

The Mobile Phone Rings: You're Fired!

Are you afraid of storms, bursting levees and killer tsunamis? Hold on to your cell phone--it may soon be warning you of impending catastrophe. Starting on Feb. 1, cell-phone owners in flood-prone regions of the Netherlands can expect a ring and then a text message warning with evacuation instructions in case of flood.

A Recipe for Good Health

Despite a fondness for goose-liver pate, chocolate mousse and puffy pastries, the French have the lowest body weight per capita in the Western world. According to best-selling author and diet guru Michel Montignac, this proves that to eat well is to eat healthily.

'Yes I am Afraid'

Cambodia's leader Hun Sen, a one-time mid-level Khmer Rouge commander, has overseen many crackdowns during the two decades he has stood at or near the helm of power.

Raiders of the Lost Art

For decades, tombaroli --tomb raiders--have pillaged Italy's archeological sites for artifacts. Despite a 1939 law prohibiting the export of antiquities pulled from Italian soil, they--aided by ingenious traffickers and see-no-evil curators--have helped stock the world's major museums with Etruscan vases, Hellenistic silver sets and Roman statues.

A World Without Laughter

In the future there will be no sex, intimacy or love. Desire and passion will endure only in the typed word. Forget about laughter and tears. People no longer will be humans, but rather "neo-human" clones, looking back on their originators' past trying to understand all that has been lost.That's the grim future envisioned by French literary provocateur Michel Houellebecq in his latest novel "The Possibilite d'une ile" ("The Possibility of an Island", in French. 485 pages.

A Hard Man To Beat

The latest issue of Paris Match delivered a bombshell for French Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy. He and his wife, Cecilia, had been on the magazine's cover several times in recent years, but always as the telegenic perfect political couple.

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