Joseph McGonagle
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Changing notions of national identity
Engaging with ethnicity
in Representing ethnicity in contemporary French visual culture
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This chapter probes several of the ways in which ethnicity in relation to France and Frenchness has been represented visually since the 1980s across a wide variety of media and sectors, including popular and auteur cinema, photography and television. It argues that, during a time of significant political and cultural debate regarding the relationship between French national identity and ethnicity, notions of French national identity across these different media have remained far from static since the 1980s. It concludes, however, that the continuing importance of whiteness as dominant cultural norm, and its links with French republican universalism as main French political philosophy, should not be underestimated.

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