Monday, March 5, 2007

Royal v. Merkel



Socialist candidate Segolene Royal will be in Berlin tomorrow, where she will meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and discuss the current Airbus crisis. In anticipation of this meeting, The International Herald Tribune is running an excellent article that explains the rather large differences between these two female politicians.

Their styles clash, too. The German chancellor is media shy and intensely private. Brought up in Communist East Germany, she trusts few people and values freedom and ideas before glamour. Royal has sought media attention at every turn of her career. She also has a steely, personal brand of feminism formed in rebellion against a father whose vision for Royal and her sisters was to get married and stay at home.

(...) Born within a year of each other, the two women are also both emblematic of modern lifestyles in their respective countries. Royal is an unmarried mother of four, whose companion saw his own presidential ambitions sidelined by her popularity. Merkel is divorced, remarried and childless.

(...) Chancellery officials, however, have not forgotten Royal's recent interview with the German weekly magazine Stern. When asked to comment about Merkel, she replied that Merkel "was really a feminist but that she did not realize it."


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