Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Veiled Conviviality

In Épinal, which has already seen the sentencing of a schoolteacher for using a racist slur in the classroom, one Fanny Truchelut, guest house owner, is on trial for refusing a room to a veiled Muslim woman on the grounds that the veil is an impediment to "conviviality," on which she insists for all her guests. She also claims to be a deeply secular person and to regard the veil "as a sign of the submission of women," which is particularly offensive to her because as a child she was "mistreated, beaten, and oppressed." When asked if she would rent a room to a Jew wearing a kipa, she said, "No, because I believe that all religious signs ... they should stay in the private sphere."

This would appear to be the reductio ad absurdum of certain arguments advanced in the name of laïcité.

1 comment:

Alain Q. said...

Of course she would have accepted a jew with a kippa. What she said is just an excuse before the court.
The answer is also that there is no surge of kippa wearers in French streets, as there is for the islamic veil.

True, her movement of rejection is illegal but I see it as a reaction of quasi-panic vis a vis the increasing number of veiled women in France, some with the full black chador from head to toe.

I was recently in Bosnia, in the moslem part of it. Somebody presented to me the Bosnian type of Islam as very liberal, pointing out the fact that no veiled women could be seen in the streets. And she added :" whenever you happen to see one, chances are that she is a French tourist."