Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts (BA)
Dr. Munira Charania
France’s failure to acknowledge its historic and present divisions in race and nationality has caused the country to develop often ineffective anti-discrimination and equality policies. These policies have produced a culture of color blindness in which racialized tropes about people of color, particularly black French citizens, and negative stereotypes based on colonial ideology are promoted. The main question I seek to answer in this study is how French identity construction and concepts of equality and color blindness effect how people of color are portrayed in French media. Throughout my research, I found that the plot and characterizations employed within film reflects the larger themes of neocolonialism, color blindness, and concepts of “French-ness”. These intersect with concerns about assimilation, the hidden racism behind color blindness, overcoming internalized stereotypes, and learning to acknowledge both native and French heritages. I conclude that in order to address the issues of representation in media and truly live up to its national cry of liberté, fraternité, et egalité, France must increase the participation of black French actors and writers in creating and performing more diverse representations of black French citizens.
Spiller, Dru, "Color blindness and minority representation in French media" (2016). Ethel Waddell Githii Honors Program Theses. 14.
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