France | News | Nicolas Sarkozy

Openly Gay Frédéric Mitterrand Named French Minister of Culture


In a dramatic reshuffling of several key cabinet positions, French President Nicolas Sarkozy appointed Frédéric Mitterrand his new Minister of Culture last night:

"The film-maker, writer and TV presenter Frédéric Mitterrand, 61, nephew of the late President François Mitterrand, will become culture minister, a very high-profile job in France. This appointment, welcomed by many in the artistic world, will irritate the Catholic, conservative right. M. Mitterrand is a vociferous campaigner for homosexual rights and a columnist in the gay magazine, Tétu."

Mitterand is France's first openly gay cabinet minister.

Feed This post's comment feed


  1. There's been a few gay ministers in the past, most were closeted, but one was open about it: Jean-Jacques Aillagon, who happened to be Minister of Culture as well from 2002 to 2004.

    Also, it's worth mentioning that homophobic minister Christine Boutin was fired! Jippy!

    Posted by: Jujupiter | Jun 24, 2009 12:21:05 PM

  2. While we duke it out to get some recognition - ANY recognition - from Fierce Advocate/Fearless Leader, France is appointing gay men to high-profile government positions.

    And they don't care if they ruffle the feathers of the Church, instead of constantly pandering to the Christian right.

    And they HAVE a MINISTRY OF CULTURE, for Chrissakes.

    Why do I live here in the land of Freedom Fries again? Can New York City just once and for all secede, please? Le sigh.

    Posted by: Andalusian Dog | Jun 24, 2009 12:40:31 PM

  3. He's actually the *third* openly gay Minister in France. Both Jean-Jacques Aillagon and Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres were Ministers of Culture before him. It should be noted however that although high-profile, the position holds very little power in reality. As usual, Sarkozy goes for show rather than substance in his decisions.

    Posted by: Nick | Jun 24, 2009 2:26:59 PM

  4. Andalusian Dog : Why are you picking on NYC ? It's not like there aren't 40+ other places in the U.S. where gay marriage isn't legal. (Throw California out, for instance).

    Posted by: JT | Jun 24, 2009 8:00:47 PM

  5. I remember recently that the State secretary to parliament (cabinet member, just bellow ministers). Roger Karoutchi came out openly a few month before the european election (so it would not be outed during the election period).

    Posted by: Esurnir | Jun 24, 2009 10:28:37 PM

  6. @Andalusian Dog : The ministry of Culture is just a loudspeaker for the music industry and the distribution industry. The lobbies dictate the policies. The other role is to distribute grants and subsidies to art projects.

    Most decision concerning that matter are done by the president.

    Concerning Mitterand the only reason he's in the government is for his name, he was a left war prize of Sarkozy so he can show that he include member of the opposition in the government, he'll bear very little influence in practice.

    Roger Karoutchi for example had a greater power as he controlled in the past the agenda of parliement. Nowaday the government control only half the weeks, another week will be controlled by the parliement and the last is dedicated to "control of the government"

    Posted by: Esurnir | Jun 25, 2009 12:18:05 AM

  7. Wait... the U.S. doesn't have a Minister of Culture? I thought it was an international thing. Sweden's got one, as well.

    Posted by: Philip Wester | Jun 25, 2009 6:04:53 AM

  8. I want to correct the article above regarding Mitterand. he is by far not the first openly gay cabinet minister. The ministery of culture has been occupied over the last 30 years more than half the time by openly gay ministers of which the more famous were Jack Lang and Jean-Jacques Aillagon.

    Posted by: burbrook | Jul 13, 2009 6:44:08 AM

Post a comment


« «David Hasselhoff Gets Gay Love Serenade on America's Got Talent« «