Some personal observations of the French education system and its graduates since say 1975:
- Literature was consistently held up as the sole model for nearly all types of writing. Indeed I seldom if ever heard anyone discuss the importance of simple, direct language or consistent terminology.
- Many, many French people clearly remember and, as a result, remain enslaved to, the dictates of primary- and secondary-level teachers concerning the importance of non-repetition when writing essays. Then, because they were not also taught that other writing styles demand different techniques, they applied this rule throughout their lives to anything and everything they are required to write.
- The memory I refer to was remarkably vivid because it often took the form of red circles around any repeated word or expression on any given page joined by a red line overwritten with a big red R for répétition.
- I was amazed how often this image of the big red R came up when explaining why my translations featured greater terminological consistency, hence more repetitions than the original. My clients often asked me to use more synonyms as they saw terminological consistency (aka repetition) as poor writing style.