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France’s Ideals Are a Harder Sell Among Diverse Youth

Assembly a minister was to be the spotlight of the occasion.

Ms. El Haïry, 32, the daughter of Muslim immigrants from Morocco and one of many youngest members of President Emmanuel Macron’s authorities, may have been the wildly profitable older sister of many individuals there. However there have been additionally sharp variations. Her household was well-to-do: Her father was a medical physician who went to work in Africa, and her mom and stepfather owned a restaurant in Casablanca, Morocco.

Politically, she had espoused clear, conservative positions since not less than her highschool days, recalled classmates on the prestigious Lycée Lyautey in Casablanca, the place she spent a part of her adolescence. Not like the youngsters she confronted in Poitiers, Ms. El Haïry strongly embraced France’s lofty universalist beliefs.

France, she mentioned in an interview at her workplace in Paris, represented a “likelihood.”

“It doesn’t have a look at you by your faith, it doesn’t have a look at you by the colour of your pores and skin, it doesn’t have a look at you by your dad and mom’ standing,” she mentioned. “It provides you the prospect to be a full citizen and to assemble your self on this pact.”

That was not how the youngsters noticed it.

A type of who attended was Jawan Moukagni, now 16, the daughter of a white Frenchwoman and an immigrant man from a former French colony in Central Africa. For so long as she may keep in mind, she had needed to hitch the nationwide gendarmerie, France’s army police.

She grew up as a working towards Catholic, however the many West African immigrants in her neighborhood in Poitiers sparked in her an curiosity in Islam.

Jawan noticed issues from either side. At college, the place France’s strict secularism forbids the carrying of any seen spiritual symbols, a few of her academics mentioned nothing when she wore a cross. However when she noticed Muslim associates put on a veil in public, she noticed what number of French individuals handled it as radioactive.

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