Tour d’horizon des campagnes électorales
toor doh-ree-zaw day kah-pah-nyay-leck-toh-RAHL. Click below to hear this.*
Overview of the electoral campaigns
Back in February 2012, France held its presidential elections. Sarkozy was out, Hollande was in. It seems appropriate to resurrect a few headlines and other remarks from that recent period, and apply them to the current U.S. political campaigns.
Let’s start with the obvious: une campagne is a campaign. The English word, like so many others, is taken directly from an old spelling of the French word; thhat’s where the i comes from. (Note that la campagne also means countryside, as in un pique-nique à la campagne.)
But what’s un tour d’horizon? Literally, a tour of the horizon (I’m sure you guessed that!), but we don’t really say that in English. A survey or an overview would probably be the closest equivalents. Not a survey in the sense of an opinion poll, but an examination of the current state of affairs based on quantifiable data from existing sources. It’s a kind of 360-degree look at everything that can be seen from here.
In the article I borrowed this headline from, that source was the candidates’ use of the four major social networks: Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, and YouTube. The writer examined how often Sarkozy and Hollande used each network to publicize their message, what people were saying on those networks about the candidates, what words were most frequently used, and so on. Here’s a link to that blogpost, written by the very interesting and well-informed Aurélie Valtat. The infographics are fascinating.
Wouldn’t you like to see a tour d’horizon of this kind on Obama vs. Romney? I would. I have a feeling it would be highly instructive.
*Some mobile phones, such as Blackberries, won’t display the audio player. If no player appears, here’s an alternative link to the audio file: