Culture-as-Race or Culture-as-Culture

Cultural Identity in French Society

in French Politics, Culture & Society
Author:
David Beriss University of New Orleans

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“Yes, but aren’t these people black?” This is perhaps the most common question Americans ask about my research among West Indian activists in Paris and Martinique. It is asked in a tone that suggests that the answer itself is obvious and, more than that, that the questions I ask about West Indian claims to identity would be almost moot if I were to just get that answer through my head. This question has always confused me.

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