Muslims in France

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Islam is the second most widely practiced religion in France, with the country being home to the largest Muslim population in Europe. Undoubtedly, France has faced various challenges in its attempt to achieve integration between its citizens and several issues have arisen during the last few decades. In order to comprehend the complexity of issues related to assimilation and integration, it is important to understand the different aspects of these issues and identify the reasons behind them to provide the fundamental basis needed to tackle them.

In the article “France and Its Muslims”, published in the 2006 September/ October issue of the magazine Foreign Affairs, Senior Editor and freelance writer Stephanie Giry discussed the assimilation of Muslims in France and presented several arguments regarding the issue. However, In order to understand the way in which French immigration and assimilation have evolved over time, it is essential to first examine the historical background that has laid the foundations of today’s French state and society before discussing Giry’s arguments. A historical overview will also provide the appropriate context in which to analyze the complex social, economic and political dilemmas that have emerged and affected both immigration and integration.

Before 1945, Muslim migration to Europe was quite modest and did not pick up until after World War II, when most European countries needed to be rebuilt, and thus mutual economic interest led them to recruit workers, who happened to be mainly Muslim. Muslim immigration to countries such as France continued to accelerate throughout the 1960s, but after the 1973 oil crisis, these immigrants could not leave and so family reunification took place in France hen...

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...times. By recognizing that many French Muslims today are making an effort to integrate and that Islamic religion is not the cause behind failed integration, as it shares European commitment to universal values and concerns, we would be one step closer to overcoming these conflicts and problems.

Works Cited

Fukuyama, F. (2010). A Year of Living Dangerously. In J. Johnson, Global Issues, Local Arguments: Readings for Writing (pp. 267-271). Boston: Longman.

Giry, S. (2006). France and Its Muslims. Foreign Affairs, 85(5), 87-104.

Huntington, S. (2010). The Special Case of Mexican Immigration. In J. Johnson, Global Issues, Local Arguments: Readings for Writing (pp. 241-246). Boston: Longman.

Noor, F. (2010). Muslim Riots in Europe: Wasn’t This Part of the Program? In J. Johnson, Global Issues, Local Arguments: Readings for Writing (pp. 271-273). Boston: Longman.

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