The Olympic Games’ Surprising French Link: It’s More Than Just the Upcoming Paris 2024 Event

2024 Olympic Games (Paris 2024)

The modern Olympic Games have a profound French connection that extends beyond the upcoming Paris 2024 event. The Games’ revival in the 1890s was spearheaded by French nobleman Baron Pierre de Coubertin, who envisioned a pacifist exercise promoting international cooperation and peace.

Coubertin’s legacy is complicated, with critics labeling him elitist and exclusionary, particularly regarding women’s participation. However, he praised Adolf Hitler and the Nazi regime in a personal letter.

2024 Olympic Games (Paris 2024)

Despite these controversies, Coubertin’s impact on the Olympics is undeniable. He introduced arts competitions, emphasizing the connection between sports and art, inspired by ancient Greek ideals.

This legacy continues in Paris 2024’s Cultural Olympiad, featuring arts events and cultural initiatives across France. France has leveraged the Olympics as a tool of soft power, showcasing national prestige and influence.

The 1924 Paris Games pioneered media and propaganda efforts, establishing a press center and recruiting bureaucrats to promote French interests through sports.

This initiative marked the beginning of sports propaganda, with France maintaining an image monopoly and controlling the narrative. The French connection to the Olympics is deeply rooted, with Coubertin’s vision shaping the modern Games.

While his legacy is questioned, his impact on the Olympics is undeniable. As Paris prepares to host the 2024 Games, France celebrates its cultural and historical ties to the Olympic movement.