The French newspaper Le Monde

After forty-four years in the 9th arrondissement on rue des Italiens, seven years in the 15th (rue Falguière) and eight years in the 5th (rue Claude-Bernard), the daily newspaper Le Monde moved in 2004 to this building (photo above) in the Croulebarbe quarter of the 13th arrondissement at 80, boulevard Auguste Blanqui.

Here it stayed until 2020, when it moved again, for the fourth time in its seventy-eight-year history. The new building is also in the 13th arrondissement, but two kilometers to the northeast at 67-69 avenue Pierre Mendès-France, directly adjoining the Austerlitz railway station and very close to the Center for Fashion and Design at Les Docks.

The name Le Monde means ‘the World’, and the paper is indeed notable for its coverage of news from countries all over the globe. In the 1960s I persuaded my employer to subscribe to Le Monde for this reason.

At that time I was working as news director of a non-commercial radio station in Berkeley, California, and our news sources were very limited — to an extent that is hard to imagine today. We had an Associated Press teletype machine that clacked away day and night in a closet and provided us with the news from America and Vietnam, but not much about Europe and rarely anything about countries in Africa, Latin America or most of Asia.

Our copies of Le Monde arrived in the mail (what we would now call ‘snail mail’) two or three days after publication. The front-page headlines were usually outdated by that time, but there were often articles inside the paper that we could quote from to widen the scope of our news broadcasts or give us ideas for interviews or documentaries.

Le Monde dated July 11, 2013

In July 2013 I bought this copy of Le Monde to read on the train on my way back to Frankfurt, but it turned out that there was a gorgeous young American woman sitting next to me (younger than my children but older than my grandchildren), so I chatted with her the whole way and didn’t get around to reading the paper until several days later.

In earlier years I used to buy a copy of Le Monde when I arrived in Paris and then carry it around in my day pack, so I could read it in cafés at odd moments over the next two or three days.

Now I have an online subscription to Le Monde, so I can scan the headlines and read several articles every day, wherever I happen to be. But I still buy the print edition sometimes, just for old times’ sake.

My photos in this post are from 2013. I revised the text in 2020 and in 2022.

See also: Le Monde’s unmistakable new headquarters.

8 thoughts on “The French newspaper Le Monde”

  1. I hope Le Monde is doing better than most of the newspapers here. They are slowly downsizing and going out of business because of Internet competition. No one wants to spend more than a few seconds on each article. I like holding the paper in my hand to read it although I do have a couple online subscriptions. Sometimes I’d rather not see the news . . . 😉

    1. Like the New York Times and the Washington Post, Le Monde has a large online subscription base, and I think that is what is keeping them solvent. Apparently their paid online readership is double their print readership.

  2. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find a newspaper (online or in print) that is credible today. Alas, my faded school-boy French would mean that I would derive little value form Le Monde.

    1. Thanks, Albert. Great to hear from you. When I retired, after 34 years of living and working in Germany, my French was in terrible shape, but it has been improving since then. It helps to read some French every day, for instance from Le Monde.

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