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Black France 2013

  • 2013-09-11T21:00:00-07:00
  • 2013-08-28T17:00:00-07:00
  • 45 mins
  • 2 hours, 15 mins
  • Documentary, Special Interest
Black France looks at the history of France's black community and their long struggle for recognition. In May 2013, France’s National Assembly successfully voted on a bill to remove the words 'race' and 'racial' from the country’s penal code.French President Francois Hollande ran on a platform promising to eliminate the word 'race' from France’s constitution. But critics were quick to point out the disparity between constitutional reform and actual practice. Between one and five million French citizens claim African or Caribbean heritage. These numbers are, however, estimates, as population censuses do not recognise race. For over a century, black immigrants, though never officially identified as different, were treated as 'others'. Even today, of France’s 577 members of parliament, only five are black. This three-part series tells the story of blacks in France - a long history of segregation, racism, protest, violence, culture and community building - from the turn of the 20th century until the present day. Part 1: Conflicting Identities Looks back on what it meant to be both black and French in the decades before France’s African colonies achieved independence. Part 2: The Battle for Social Justice Reveals the ongoing struggles of immigrants from Africa and the Caribbean to achieve rights, form communities and have their contributions to French society recognised. Part 3: The Immigration Problem Focuses on the extreme racism and discrimination black immigrants faced during times of economic hardship and through political shifts in post-World War II France. Produced by Phares and Balises for Al Jazeera.

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